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Sunday, March 3, 2024

Nonthaburi hospital director caught taking bribes


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The director of Bang Kruai Hospital in Nonthaburi was arrested the day before yesterday for allegedly receiving 93,000 baht in bribes from an IT company. The suspect initially denied the charge, saying the money was intended to be spent on the hospital and the public.

Police Major Jaroonkiat Pankaew, of the anti-corruption division of the police, along with Poomwisan caught Kasemsuk, deputy. Secretary-General of the Public Sector Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), 53-year-old hospital director Dr Wichai Rattanapanpanich while taking the money from the IT company hired to set up the hospital’s computer system.

The money was used to lure the suspect so that he could be caught in the act. Police have gathered additional evidence and documents for investigation.

The PACC had previously received a complaint via its 1206 hotline from the IT company after it signed the 280,000 baht contract to install the computer system at the hospital, with the director reportedly demanding 15 per cent of the bid price. The demand was then raised to 35 per cent (93,000 baht) because the director didn’t think that was enough, the IT company said. In response, PACC, together with the police, set up a trap for the director.

The initial investigation also revealed that several similar complaints had been filed against the director. Although the suspect’s secretary turned up with 500,000 baht for bail, authorities are still considering whether he should be granted temporary release.

The PACC said it will investigate the matter further before forwarding it to the National Anti-Corruption Commission.

“Businesses confronted in any way from government officials can file a complaint through the 1206 hotline. The authorities will investigate the matter and coordinate with the police accordingly,” Poomwisan said.

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