By SITTHICHAI SIKHAWAT
KRABI GOVERNOR Pinit Boonlert yesterday dismissed the deputy mayor of Tambon Koh Lanta municipality after he was caught red-handed taking partial payment for a Bt20 million bribe that he had demanded from a landowner.
Pinit said he had also ordered the district office and land officials to look into the land rights documents issued for these plots and to punish anyone who is found involved in criminal activities.
Krabi land official Watchara Buathong said an initial check found that the 90 rai, for which six land rights documents were issued in 2014, overlapped a 400-rai public plot that had been registered since 1933.
The 400-rai land is slated for demarcation on July 21.
He said that land officials would carry out the demarcation job and confirm the overlapping area so as to determine which land rights documents need to be revoked.
Anusorn Wangphon, 49, was arrested when he received the first instalment of the bribe – Bt2 million in cash and a cheque for Bt5 million – during a sting operation organised by the National Anti-Corruption Commission.
This stemmed from a land buyer’s complaint earlier this month that Anusorn has allegedly demanded Bt20 million from the complainant to facilitate the issuing of land titles for the plots, that the complainant – a Bangkok-based company executive – had bought on Lanta Yai Island.
Anusorn was taken to Krabi Court yesterday morning for the first round of 12-day detention, and investigators objected to him being granted bail on grounds of flight risk. Anusorn’s lawyer also posted a Bt5 million cash guarantee.
Anusorn said briefly that apart from him, many other people would also be held accountable for issuing papers for plots overlapping public land, adding that his bribery case would proceed as per the course of justice.