Top Thai police officials accused of bribery, insulting monarchy; more suspects investigated

Thai police say they are investigating more suspects after a senior police officer and six colleagues were arrested on serious charges ranging from bribery to insulting the monarchy.

National Police Chief Somyot Pumpanmuang told reporters Tuesday that the highest-ranking suspect, former Central Investigation Bureau chief Lt. Gen. Pongpat Chayapan, had confessed to all charges, including soliciting bribes for job appointments and allowing illegal gambling and oil smuggling.

He said a search of buildings belonging to the suspects arrested Sunday had turned up assets worth up to 10 billion baht ($305 million).

The suspects are alleged to have invoked claims of links to the royal palace in carrying out their wrongdoing, but Somyot declined to elaborate on the charges of lese majeste, insulting the monarchy.