BANGKOK – A massage parlor tycoon-turned-politician and outspoken critic of corruption has been sentenced to two years in prison for employing gangster tactics in 2003 to clear a prime piece of real estate in Thailand's capital.
The Supreme Court found Chuwit Kamolvisit guilty Thursday of damaging personal property and other offenses by hiring hundreds of men to evict bars and small stores from the property and then raze it. Several dozen others were convicted with him.
After his arrest, Chuwit began publicly accusing police of taking payoffs, mostly in connection with his massage parlors, which were fronts for prostitution. Crusading against corruption, he sold the parlors and entered politics, running unsuccessfully for Bangkok governor but winning a seat in Parliament as a blunt-speaking anti-establishment figure.