In a recent development, the Department of Corrections is gearing up for the possible return of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra to Thailand. This comes after Nongpat Thaenrat, also known as “Ung Ing Kandee,” the leader of the Pheu Thai Party, posted a message on her Facebook page indicating that Thaksin Shinawatra would be coming back to the country on August 10, following the significance of his annual birthday on July 26.
The Director-General of the Department of Corrections, Ageudum Sinthapapphan, disclosed that there haven’t been any special arrangements made so far for Thaksin’s reception. However, the department already has established protocols to follow in case of his return. The Immigration Police, responsible for controlling the entry of individuals into the country, would be the first agency to handle Thaksin’s case if he arrives as scheduled.
According to Ageudum, the process would involve apprehending him and taking him to court for further procedures. Subsequently, the court would issue a detention order, and the Department of Corrections would be in charge of receiving Thaksin for incarceration, likely in a specialized prison in Bangkok.
Ageudum further explained that once a suspect is brought to a correctional facility, they go through standard procedures, similar to any other inmate. This includes documenting their details, conducting a medical examination, and isolating them for approximately ten days to screen for COVID-19, as part of the current pandemic precautions. In case of any pre-existing medical conditions, the Department of Corrections has medical personnel ready to attend to Thaksin’s health needs while adhering to the established regulations.
However, if there are medical conditions that require continuous treatment, the decision to transfer Thaksin to a medical facility at the Correctional Hospital would be at the discretion of the medical team. As the former Prime Minister is considered a high-profile inmate, it is likely that security measures in the prison would be enhanced, including the installation of closed-circuit cameras and strict food control.
Regarding the potential risks and security measures, Ageudum firmly stated, “At present, there have been no extraordinary arrangements made by any agency. The Department of Corrections has well-defined plans and procedures to handle the reception of any inmate, and we will strictly follow them. Our responsibilities are limited to receiving inmates based on court orders, and we will not engage in any actions beyond that.”
As the situation unfolds, the authorities are determined to maintain the safety and security of both the correctional facilities and the public. Regardless of Thaksin Shinawatra’s return, the Department of Corrections remains steadfast in its commitment to uphold established protocols and ensure the wellbeing of all inmates, treating them equally under the law.