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Thailand drops charges against Ferrari driver Red Bull


Thailand's decision to drop the criminal complaint against the heir of the Red Bull Energy Drink fortune has triggered a backlash in the country.

Vorayuth & # 39; Boss & # 39; Yoovidhya was charged with murdering a police officer in 2012 who raised questions about crime and punishment for the rich and loved ones in Thailand.

Arrest warrants against Yoovidhya, whose whereabouts are not known, including Interpol's warrant, are being withdrawn, police say.

The porn police officer Klunprasert, the brother of the dead policeman, has expressed dismay at the prosecutor's decision to drop the charges.

"Many of my friends called to tell me the prosecutors closed the case," he said.

& # 39; It hurts me a lot. It shows no justice for the poor. Thailand has a huge gap between rich and poor in every respect, and this case is a clear example. & # 39;

Vorayuth, grandson of the late Chaleo Yoovidhya, creator of the Krating Daeng or Red Bull Energy Drinks, had been charged with speeding, escaping, and ruthless driving, which resulted in death and had a statue of the restrictions until 2027.

Vorayuth's current whereabouts are unknown after he fled Thailand in late April 2017. He was last pictured in the same month in a £ 6.5m house in Knightsbridge, West London.

In April, the international Playboy and his parents left a house in Knightsbridge, West London, for £ 6.5m before boarding a vehicle with darkened windows. Thailand has now dropped criminal charges against him and his red Interpol notice is being withdrawn

The Ferrari, which was allegedly involved in an accident during its investigation at the Thong Lor police station in Bangkok, was pictured on September 3, 2012

The Ferrari, which was allegedly involved in an accident during its investigation at the Thong Lor police station in Bangkok, was pictured on September 3, 2012

Yoovidhya avoided indicting him by claiming to be ill or working abroad whenever a hearing was scheduled. Vorayuth (second from right) was seen with friends in an apparently nightclub in 2014

Yoovidhya avoided indicting him by claiming to be ill or working abroad whenever a hearing was scheduled. Vorayuth (second from right) was seen with friends in an apparently nightclub in 2014

"This case has ended," deputy police spokeswoman Kissana Phathanacharoen said in a press conference.

"In June, the Attorney General gave us the final order not to persecute Vorayuth for ruthless driving and death," he said.

Lieutenant Colonel Thanawuth Sanguansuk confirmed that all charges against Vorayuth Yoovidhya have been dropped. The statute of limitations had expired for several, but the charge of causing reckless driving would not have expired 15 years after the accident date.

The case attracted widespread attention due to the perception that the rich and well-connected are unpunished in the Thai judicial system, which, like other government institutions, has been criticized in recent years for alleged political bias.

Thanawuth said prosecutors who worked on the case informed the police last month of their decision to withdraw the last remaining indictment.

"Yes, they had informed us of their opinion of dropping all charges. You cite the fact that the family members (the policeman) were compensated by Vorayuth's family, Thanawuth said.

Vorayuth allegedly raced his Sukhumvit Road, one of Bangkok's main attractions, in his Ferrari on September 3, 2012.

It is believed that he was behind the wheel of the car that hit police officer Wichien Klanprasert on a main street in central Bangkok on a motorcycle patrol, pulling him tens of meters under the wheels.

Vorayuth, grandson of the late Chaleo Yoovidhya, creator of Krating Daeng, or Red Bull, energy drink, had been charged with speeding, escaping, and ruthless driving, which resulted in death. Above, Vorayuth is being investigated by a plainclothes police officer after the attack in Bangkok, Thailand on Monday, September 3, 2012

Vorayuth, grandson of the late Chaleo Yoovidhya, creator of Krating Daeng, or Red Bull, energy drink, had been charged with speeding, escaping, and ruthless driving, which resulted in death. Above, Vorayuth is being investigated by a plainclothes police officer after the attack in Bangkok, Thailand on Monday, September 3, 2012

After high-ranking officers arrived, Vorayuth turned to his father on September 3, 2012, with his hat and arm pulled down. The charges against the heir to the Red Bull Billions have now been inexplicably dropped

After high-ranking officers arrived, Vorayuth turned to his father on September 3, 2012, with his hat and arm pulled down. The charges against the heir to the Red Bull Billions have now been inexplicably dropped

Vorayuth's father Chalerm Yoovidhya, the oldest of eleven siblings, is Thailand's fourth richest man. . Vorayuth is pictured above in March 2012

Vorayuth's father Chalerm Yoovidhya, the oldest of eleven siblings, is Thailand's fourth richest man. . Vorayuth is pictured above in March 2012

The car sped off and let the officer die at the scene. The police followed a trail of oil and brake fluid to the Yoovidhya luxury family compound on a nearby side street.

Initially, investigators said there was a chauffeur behind the wheel of the car, the windshield was broken, the bumper dangled.

But after high-ranking officers arrived, Vorayuth presented himself with his hat pulled down and his father holding his arm.

Later that day, the Yoovidhyas found a $ 15,000 bail at the police station and went home.

Vorayuth's mother and her son leave the £ 6.5 million house in Knightsbridge, West London in April 2017

Vorayuth's mother and her son leave the £ 6.5 million house in Knightsbridge, West London in April 2017

The scion, whose billionaire father is Thailand's fourth richest man, never appeared on a formal charge, so that some of the charges brought against him could expire.

He avoided indicting him by claiming to be ill or working abroad whenever a hearing was scheduled.

In total, he missed eight subpoenas to appear in court in connection with the case before the authorities issued an arrest warrant against him five years after the accident.

Yoovidhya fled Thailand in late April 2017, shortly before the authorities issued the arrest warrant after repeatedly failing to meet with prosecutors.

Since the crash, an AP investigation showed that he continued to enjoy a luxurious lifestyle, trotting in private jets around the world, snowboarding in Japan, clubbing in London, and partying on the Formula 1 Grand Prix circuit, including photos for the red bull stable of the bull team.

In April 2017, the international Playboy, accompanied by two female companions, left a £ 6.5 million house in Knightsbridge, West London, before boarding a vehicle with darkened windows.

Later that day, he, his parents and a cousin hastily left the address with a baggage train.

An international application to arrest Vorayuth was made on August 28, 2017. The Red Notice went to all 190 Interpol member countries.

Vorayuth (third from left) performed with a group of all ages in traditional Japanese clothing on a trip to Japan in August 2015

Vorayuth (third from left) performed with a group of all ages in traditional Japanese clothing on a trip to Japan in August 2015

Among other things, border officials are advised that international travel is more likely to result in arrests. In May 2017, the authorities in Bangkok canceled Vorayuth's Thai passport.

The handling of the case has led to bitter criticism of the police and prosecutors and accusations that the wealthy, well-connected family has actually been freed from the judiciary.

Earlier, police spokesman Colonel Krissana Pattanacharoen said his agency had done everything in their power to indict Vorayuth.

"I'm not saying it's a case the rich man gets away with." Krissana said.

In December 2014, Vorayuth (second from left) was photographed smiling with a group of friends in Thailand

In December 2014, Vorayuth (second from left) was photographed smiling with a group of friends in Thailand

England and London in particular is a popular meeting place for Yoovidhya, which was pictured with friends at the same address in 2016

England and London in particular is a popular meeting place for Yoovidhya, which was pictured with friends at the same address in 2016

"I cannot answer this question. But what I can answer is that if you look at the timeline here of what we did, there is nothing wrong with the investigators who are running the case. & # 39;

Vorayuth's grandfather Chaleo was the third richest person in Thailand at the time of his death in 2012, at the age of 88, with an estimated net worth of $ 5 billion.

Many Thais viewed Vorayuth's treatment as lenient due to his family's wealth and stimulated the debate about impunity for the rich.

But Kissana rejected such a proposal on Friday.

"This is not a double standard," he said, adding that the case could be reopened if there was new evidence.

"We are saddened by the loss of another police officer," he said.

DETAILS OF THE PRESENTED FATAL HIT AND RUN BY VORAYUTH & # 39; BOSS & # 39; YOOVIDHYA

Vorayuth allegedly raced his Sukhumvit Road, one of Bangkok's main attractions, in his Ferrari on September 3, 2012.

The super car is said to be against the police Sgt. Maj. Wichean Glanprasert.

The police chased their way to the Red Bull site the next few hours after the crash.

Initially, investigators said there was a chauffeur behind the wheel of the car, the windshield was broken, the bumper dangled.

Vorayuth will be accompanied by the police in Bangkok, Thailand on September 3, 2012

Vorayuth will be accompanied by the police in Bangkok, Thailand on September 3, 2012

But after high-ranking officers arrived, Vorayuth presented himself with his hat pulled down and his father holding his arm.

Later that day, the Yoovidhyas found a $ 15,000 bail at the police station and went home.

For Pornanan Glanprasert, Wichean's brother, and his sisters, they faced an incredible tragedy.

In the days after death, they attended funeral rites in the temple, where Buddhist monks sang and burned incense.

One day Vorayuth and his mother made a surprising private visit. Dressed in black, they pressed their palms together and bowed to Sgt. Maj. Wichean's portrait.

The policeman's family mourned painfully, but at least they figured there would be justice. Wichean was a police officer. The criminal justice system would certainly hold its murderer responsible.

The case unfolded over days and months. The Yoovidhya family lawyer said Vorayuth did not leave the scene to flee, but because he would go home to tell his father.

Regarding blood tests that showed Vorayuth was well above the legal alcohol limit, his lawyer said his client was shaken by the crash and therefore drank to "relieve his tension."

Bangkok's police commissioner Comronwit Toopgrajank promised integrity because he was skeptical in public whether prosperity and influence would let Vorayuth off the hook.

"We won't let this policeman die without justice. Believe me, 'said Comronwit. & # 39; The truth will prevail in this case. I can guarantee it. & # 39;

When he retired in 2014, the case was still unsolved.

Vorayuth's lawyer met with Wichean's family, who accepted an agreement of about $ 100,000.

In return, they had to sign a document that promised not to bring criminal charges, eliminating Thailand's legal ability for victims to bring suspects to justice if the police and prosecutors take no action.

Since then, Vorayuth has missed several instructions from the prosecutor's office to report to the court about speeding, escaping, and ruthless driving that caused the death.

The police said Vorayuth admitted that he was driving, but not inconsiderately – the officer had turned in front of him, he said. The quick fee expired after one year.

Police spokesman Colonel Krissana Pattanacharoen said his agency has done everything in its power to indict Vorayuth.

"I'm not saying it's a case the rich man gets away with." Krissana said.

"I cannot answer this question. But what I can answer is that if you look at the timeline here of what we did, there is nothing wrong with the investigators who are running the case. & # 39;

On Friday, July 24, it was announced that Thailand had inexplicably dropped charges against the heir to the Red Bull Energy Drink fortune.

"This case has ended," deputy police spokeswoman Kissana Phathanacharoen said in a press conference.

Kissana rejected any suggestions for leniency due to the wealth of the family.

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