High-profile Thai police officer “Big Joke” Surachate Hakparn admits to paying reporters to cover his activities, citing their low salaries and financial struggles, which he funds with his family fortune. Despite recent media attention from a police crackdown on online gambling, Big Joke denies any involvement and is not pursuing the position of police chief. #Thailand #Police #BigJoke #OnlineGambling #MediaAttention #FinancialStruggles
High-profile Policeman and Family Fortune
Embattled deputy national police chief Surachate Hakparn, also known as Big Joke, revealed in a recent interview with TV news anchor Sorrayuth Suthassanachinda that he has paid some reporters for covering his activities. He stated that he helps these reporters due to their small salaries and financial struggles. Big Joke’s acts of generosity are funded by his family fortune, which has no connections to crime.
Financial Support for Reporters
Pol Gen Surachate mentioned that he is particularly close to four reporters, whom he has paid 10,000 baht each when they covered specific stories. He sympathizes with their financial difficulties, as most reporters earn modest salaries.
Funding Police Investigations
Big Joke’s recent spotlight in the media is due to a raid on his home in connection with a police crackdown on online gambling. Despite denying any involvement and threatening legal action over the search, he shared that he spends around 1.5 million baht a month from his own pocket to cover team expenses. The police department often lacks resources for pursuing certain investigations, which is why he steps in to provide financial support.
The Source of Big Joke’s Wealth
The deputy police chief’s base salary is 78,000 baht a month. However, his wife, the daughter of billionaire transport and property tycoon Bancha Panitchapong from Songkhla, provides him with additional financial resources. This wealth allows him to support his team and the reporters who cover his activities.
Recipients of Surachate’s Generosity
Big Joke mentioned a TV news reporter from Songkhla as one of the recipients of his financial gifts. They have known each other since he was a local police chief in Hat Yai. Another reporter from the southern province of Nakhon Si Thammarat also benefited from his generosity, along with their team of three or four who accompanied them to cover his activities.
No Ambition for the Top Position
Regarding the recent search of his rented houses in Bangkok and the arrest of several close subordinates for their alleged involvement in the gambling business, Big Joke said he is not in a hurry to become the police chief. He emphasized that the top job can wait, as he still has seven to eight years left in the service and other accomplishments to achieve before considering the promotion.
A History of Generosity
Pol Gen Surachate’s generosity traces back to his time as an inspector, where he would give each reporter 500 baht for meals and petrol at his news conferences.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: What has Big Joke admitted to doing in relation to reporters?
Big Joke, a high-profile Thai police officer, admitted in a recent interview that he has paid some reporters to cover his activities. He funds these acts of generosity with his family fortune and helps these reporters due to their low salaries and financial struggles.
Q2: How does Big Joke financially support his police team during investigations?
Big Joke revealed that he spends around 1.5 million baht a month from his own pocket to cover team expenses during investigations. This is because the police department often lacks resources for pursuing certain cases, prompting him to step in and provide financial support.
Q3: What is Big Joke’s stance on pursuing the position of police chief?
Big Joke stated that he is not in a hurry to become the police chief. He emphasized that the top job can wait, as he still has seven to eight years left in the service and other accomplishments to achieve before considering the promotion.