Asia

Red Bull heir Vorayuth Yoovidhaya faces Thai arrest

  • 2 September 2013
  • From the section Asia
Vorayuth Yoovidhya (R) being taken by a plain-clothes policeman in Bangkok (3 Sept 2012)
Image caption Vorayuth Yoovidhya was detained after police traced petrol to the family home

Thai authorities will seek to arrest a grandson of Red Bull's billionaire, co-creator Chaleo Yoovidhaya, after he failed to appear at a court hearing.

Vorayuth Yoovidhaya, 28, is alleged to have driven his Ferrari into a police officer and killed him last September.

Mr Vorayuth's lawyers say he had become ill in Singapore, and was unable to return to Thailand in time for the indictment hearing.

Prosecutors will seek an arrest warrant on Tuesday.

"He suddenly fell ill which made it impossible for him to travel back today," said Mr Vorayuth's lawyer Thanit Buakeaw.

The lawyer denied his client had fled the country and said he would return in the next three days and co-operate with investigators.

He faces a maximum of 10 years in jail on charges of causing death through reckless driving and failing to stop to help the victim.

His indictment has been delayed several times in the past year, and a speeding charge was dropped because of a statute of limitations.

The initial investigation team had to be disbanded after an officer was accused of covering up Mr Vorayuth's involvement.

The suspect's grandfather, Chaleo Yoovidhaya, died last year having become a billionaire from the worldwide sale of the Red Bull energy drink.

More on this story