Phuket authorities seek dissolution of Swiss man’s Green Elephant FoundationLegacy

Phuket‘s provincial authorities, led by Governor Sophon Suwannarat, are seeking the dissolution of the Green Elephant Wildlife Foundation. Swiss expat Urs Fehr registered the foundation, which is now under investigation after a series of controversies.

The announcement came after Governor Sophon’s return from promoting Phuket at the International Tourism Bourse (ITB Berlin 2024). His first official action was a meeting at Phuket Provincial Hall, attended by Ministry of Interior Deputy Permanent Secretary Chamnanwit Terat, and Phuket Provincial Police Commander Police Major General Sinlert Sukhum.

“The Phuket provincial hall through public prosecutors will ask a court to dissolve the elephant foundation.”

This decision follows a call for swift resolution from Chamnanwit, who emphasized the importance of maintaining peace and aiding the recovery of tourism.

An investigation into the foundation and the Green Elephant Sanctuary Park in Cherng Talay, both operated by Fehr under the same logo, is underway, said Governor Sophon.

“Clarification must be made within 30 days. If wrongdoing is found, legal action will be taken immediately.”

In addition, an inquiry into the land where the Fehr incident took place is ongoing. Steps at the site, confirmed to be public land, have already been demolished. Other villas at the luxury housing estate have also had their steps removed due to alleged encroachment on public land.

Regarding Fehr’s status, Governor Sophon confirmed that an order to revoke his permit to stay had been signed. However, Fehr will still be allowed to remain in the country to appeal the assault charge against him. He is currently on bail, unable to leave Phuket, and must report to authorities every 15 days.

On the topic of firearms, the Thalang District Office has seized a rifle and handgun from Fehr and the foundation. Governor Sophon also mentioned a case of suspected money laundering, which the DSI will investigate on March 15, reported Phuket News.

Phuket Provincial Police Commander Police Major General Sinlert Sukhum provided an update on the ongoing crackdown on law-breaking foreigners in Phuket, reporting 33 arrests over the past week, including 11 Russian nationals and five from Myanmar. The most common charge against these foreigners was illegal work, he said.

In related news, the visa status of a Swiss national involved in an assault case in Phuket was under review by immigration police. Investigations were underway regarding his businesses and foundation.

The story Phuket authorities seek dissolution of Swiss man’s Green Elephant Foundation as seen on Thaiger News.

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Author: Mitch Connor