Wit­ness in­ter­views re­sume in hear­ings over al­leged poach­ing

The Nation - - AROUND THAILAND -

The sec­ond round of wit­ness in­ter­views and ev­i­dence ex­am­i­na­tion in the “black leop­ard” al­leged poach­ing case against con­struc­tion ty­coon Premchai Kar­na­suta be­gan yes­ter­day.

Six out of 32 wit­nesses for the plain­tiff, in­clud­ing Thungyai Nare­suan Wildlife Sanc­tu­ary chief Wichien Chin­na­wong, tes­ti­fied at Thong Pha Phum Provin­cial Court in Kan­chanaburi dur­ing the first round of in­ter­views last month.

Seub Nakhasathien Foun­da­tion said that the re­main­ing wit­nesses for the plain­tiff would be in­ter­viewed be­fore the court heard the tes­ti­mony of 17 de­fence wit­nesses.

The next wit­ness in­ter­ro­ga­tion ses­sions on the plain­tiff side will be held from next Tues­day to Thurs­day, then on De­cem­ber 18.

The Na­tional Park, Wildlife and Plant Con­ser­va­tion Depart­ment and the of­fi­cial

in­ves­ti­ga­tion team has charged Ital­ian-Thai Devel­op­ment pres­i­dent Premchai and his three as­so­ciates, Yong Dod­krua, Tha­nee Thum­mat and Nathee Ri­amsaen, with il­le­gally hunt­ing black leop­ard and other wild an­i­mals in­side Thungyai Nare­suan Wildlife Sanc­tu­ary this Fe­bru­ary.

Six al­le­ga­tions, in­clud­ing il­le­gally car­ry­ing firearms in pub­lic, hunt­ing pro­tected wildlife, and poach­ing in­side the wildlife re­serve, were laid against Premchai, while Tha­nee, Yong, and Nathee are fac­ing eight, seven, and five al­le­ga­tions re­spec­tively.

The 17 de­fence wit­nesses are sched­uled to tes­tify dur­ing six ses­sions from De­cem­ber 1921 and De­cem­ber 25-27.

Fol­low­ing his re­quest, Premchai will not at­tend the court un­til the wit­ness in­ter­views for the prose­cu­tion are held.

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