THAILAND: SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS DEATH PENALTY FOR EX-DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF
October 16, 2009: Thailand's Supreme Court upheld the death sentence of former deputy police commissioner Chalor Kerdthes for the murder of the wife and son of a gem trader as he investigated the theft of Saudi royal jewellery.
Chalor was convicted of the abduction and murder in 1994 of the family members of Santi Srithanakhan, who had bought some of the jewellery stolen in a notorious heist from a Saudi prince's palace.
The prosecution argued that Chalor abducted the pair to pressure the merchant into revealing the whereabouts of the lavish gems, worth US$20 million (S$27.9 million).
Chalor, 71, was initially sentenced to life imprisonment, but an appeal court in 2006 upped his penalty to the death sentence, leading him to further appeal to the highest court in Thailand.
Chalor could still submit a petition to the Thai king seeking royal amnesty within 60 days, a corrections department official said. (Sources: Earth Times, Afp, 16/10/2009)