After late start, new police chief rose swiftly through the ranks
The appointment of Thailand’s new police chief, Pol General Torsak Sukvimol, has received royal endorsement. A royal command removing Torsak from the post of deputy police commissioner-general and appointing him as the new police commissioner-general was published in the Royal Gazette on Saturday.
The appointment takes effect from Sunday, according to the royal command, which was undersigned by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin.
The Police Commission on September 27 selected Torsak as the new head of the Royal Thai Police, replacing Pol General Damrongsak Kittipraphat, who retires at the end of September.
Torsak, 59, was nominated for the top police position by Srettha, who serves as chairman of the Police Commission by right of office. The prime minister also chaired the commission’s meeting that voted to select Torsak as the next police chief, but he reportedly abstained.
Torsak was born on January 27, 1964, in Phetchaburi province as the youngest of five siblings. One of his elder brothers is Air Chief Marshal Satitpong Sukvimol, the private secretary to His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn and grand chamberlain of the Royal Household Bureau.
The new national police chief obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science from Thammasat University and a master’s degree from Sripatum University.
After his graduation, Torsak began his career at the petroleum company Caltex. He quit seven years later to pursue his childhood dream of being a police officer, attending a Royal Thai Police training course for non-graduates of the Royal Police Cadet Academy to become commissioned officers.
Torsak first joined the police force in 1997 at the age of 33, working as a deputy inspector at the Patrol and Special Operations Division.
Two years later, he became a deputy inspector at the Crime Suppression Division (CSD), where he worked for 17 years before being promoted to an inspector at the Tourist Police Bureau.
Later in his police career, Torsak became deputy commander of the CSD, overseeing vital tasks like crowd control, special commando operations, and providing security to members of the royal family.
Over the past five years, Torsak has seen a quick rise through the hierarchy, which eventually catapulted him to the Thai police force’s top seat.
In 2018, he was appointed commander of the Police Royal Guards 904 Division, which is attached to the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB). A year later, Torsak was appointed deputy commissioner of the CIB and became its commissioner in October 2020.
He was promoted to assistant national police chief in 2021, deputy chief last year, and police chief this year.