View Full Version : Phuket police boss slams Bangkok over CCTV delay

Summer Narvasa
20th April 2013, 18:08
The gold shop robbery and murder on April has highlighted once again a nagging problem for Phuket’s police force: the continuing lack of decent coverage of the island with CCTV cameras, despite proposals to the government.

CCTVs are common across the world; they were used to identify suspects in the recent deadly Boston Marathon blasts.
Pol Maj Gen Choti Chavalviwat, Commander of Phuket Provincial Police, said that CCTV is “the best helper for policemen today”, and slammed the government for dragging its feet on supplying the cameras he believes are essential to the island’s security.

“How many foreigners have to die, or how much blood has to flow before the government finally decides to approve the CCTV cameras we need?”

He said, “If we had better CCTV we might by now have solved the Kasikornbank robbery [in Rawai on January 7], the murder of Jintana [Mahattanapak, shot in a professional hit on January 18], the gold robbery and others.

“I want to work on and complete all my responsibilities. But, there are not a enough CCTV cameras to watch for and follow criminals."

“For example, in the gold robbery next to Tesco-Lotus, the only footage we could find was from cameras belonging to the gold shop. The robber had to take off his disguise at some time. If we had more cameras, we could follow and find the suspects and solve criminal cases.

“Governor Maitree Intusut and I have presented our CCTV project to the Thai Government but we have had no response from government.

“The only thing we can do in the meantime is try to increase the number of volunteers and citizens who can help us [by acting as our eyes on the street].” He was referring to the increasing numbers of safety zones being set up around the island, such as the one proposed for Phuket Town yesterday.

The effectiveness of CCTV cameras was proven when Australian travel agent Michelle Smith was fatally stabbed in a botched bag-snatching on June 20 last year. Her attackers were tracked on CCTV until they were seen sitting in a restaurant.

Police interviews of staff at the restaurant revealed the two attackers’ names, and they were arrested five days later. They are now serving life sentences in jail. [GOOGLE MAP]Phuket, Thailand[/GOOGLE MAP]