Koh Lipe resort mired in fresh row
Tarutao National Marine Park has lodged a complaint with police against a resort operator on Koh Lipe island in Satun’s Muang district, after an examination of satellite images showed no signs of prior land use at the plot the resort stands on.
Pol Maj Gen Supawat Thapkhliew, chief of Satun provincial police, said the Tarutao park, which supervises the resort island, suspects the Nor Sor 3 papers for the piece of land might have been obtained illegally since the land was unoccupied before.
Nor Sor 3 papers are land utilisation certificates that can be upgraded to full deeds.
Manit Kaweerat, the operator of the resort in question, insisted he has the proper Nor Sor 3 documents to prove his rights over the 50-rai plot on which the resort is located.
The investor said he had verified the land papers before purchasing the plot from the former owner and is ready to go to court to prove his rights over the land.
The complaint was lodged as another land dispute between the resort operator and the Royal Thai Police (RTP) intensified.
The police force has accused the operator of encroaching on its 10 rai of land which was granted by the Tarutao National Marine Park to build a police station and accommodation for police officers in 1989.
According to acting deputy national police chief Wirachai Songmetta, the developer of the resort had contested the RTP’s right to use the land in court, and demanded that the police station along with other structures be demolished.
In 2012, the first court ruled in the resort developer’s favour. However, the Appeal Court and the Supreme Court dismissed the lawsuit and ruled in the police’s favour.
According to the Supreme Court ruling, the land documents held by the resort developer were not good enough to overrule the permission granted to the RTP by Tarutao park officials to use the land.