Viral video of cruelly treated elephants in Thailand prompts probe

Police and soldiers are investigating after a video about cruel treatment of elephants in Songkhla's Hat Yai district yesterday went viral on the Internet.

Hat Yai police station superintendent Pol Col Passagorn Klunwarn led a police-army team to inspect a makeshift shelter of elephants and mahouts in Kaew Sawang Community area in Tambon Khlong Hae.

One female elephant and two mahouts were found at the shelter and they were able to present the elephant-ownership documents. Police took the men into custody and collected the documents for further investigation, pending the livestock development office or related agencies' inspection of the animal.

Passagorn said after the video of men beating elephant spread on the Internet, police immediately launched investigation to look for the elephant and the culprits. So far police investigation four makeshift shelters in Hat Yai and they could all present documents, so police were waiting for confirmations from related authority before continuing the investigation, he added.