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Napapa ‘Patt’ Tantrakul Denies Money Laundering Allegation

Bangkok, Sat Mar 18 2017
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Actress Napapa ‘Patt’ Tantrakul insisted yesterday that every baht she made had legitimate origins and nothing to do with the alleged money-laundering that police have accused her husband of committing.

After four hours of questioning at the Narcotics Suppression Bureau (NSB), she told reporters that she gave investigators testimony as a witness, not as a suspect facing charges.

Napapa’s husband, motorbike racing star Akarakit “Benz Racing” Worarojchroendet is accused of buying a Lamborghini sports car with drug money from a network led by alleged Laotian drug kingpin Xaysana Keopimpa.

Yesterday, Napapa said police focused on asking her about her income last year and this year and she submitted documents including tax-payment papers. She said she was mystified by an earlier comment by police that she had 30 million baht in her bank account. She said she had less than that amount and could explain the origin of all of her money, which came from acting jobs.

Napapa said she had been dating Akarakit for a little over a year before they got married, so she couldn’t possibly know everything about his life and had no knowledge of the purchase and payment for the Lamborghini.

The NSB issued a summons against her last week as it probed Akarakit, who had been charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and was released on bail. NSB deputy commander Pol Colonel Somkiat Wansiriwilai said the actress had been cooperative and identified her income and the origin of her assets clearly.

As well as Napapa, Akarakit’s mother and two employees at his Area 51 big bike accessories shop also provided information as witnesses yesterday. The employees told police that transactions between them and Akarakit involved buying auto parts. Somkiat said the NSB would soon summon Akarakit to provide more information.

The case against the actress’s husband stems from an operation to search 40 locations around the country, including the Area 51 shop in Inthamara, to smash a network allegedly led by Xaysana. It follows Xaysana’s arrest at Suvarnabhumi Airport on January 19.

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