Suspects arrested for their alleged roles in a police exam-cheating scheme will be required to pay a total of more than Bt100 million (S$4 million) in compensation for money spent on tests that had to be scrapped, a Royal Thai Police spokesman said yesterday. Of the 66 suspects, 53 have turned themselves in, said Pol MajGeneral Piya Uthayo. Three of them are police officers who have been suspended from duty. The compensation demand will be submitted by public prosecutors during a single trial, without the necessity for separate civil lawsuits.
Piya stated again that there was no evidence the exam questions had been leaked, but rather that most of the cheating involved applicants receiving answers through wireless communication tools, or getting others to sit the exams for them. Police have compiled 90 per cent of evidence against the suspects towards a charge of public fraud, he added.
A meeting of senior police investigators yesterday was told of possible cheating in previous government selection exams for district officials, teachers and other civilian officials. The suspicion is based on an important piece of evidence, a notebook seized from key suspect Tuenjai Phongphan, a Si Sa Ket school teacher, containing a large number of names of candidates thought to be her clients, who later passed the exams and became government officials.
The Antimoney Laundering Office is tracking transactions of money between Tuenjai and several suspects, including Wiboolsak Saenjak, whose whereabouts are unknown, with an eye to seizing their assets.
Nationwide exams will be held in two batches, on August 3 and August 5, the former for administrative positions and the latter for posts in crime suppression activities. Piya said the number of exam venues had been reduced by 6,000 rooms in order to minimise the chance of cheating.