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Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.
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    Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    Judgement day for Thaksin
    By The Nation

    The Supreme Court is today set to hand down its verdict in the controversial Rachadaphisek land case - a decision that will likely determine the political future of ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra.

    If found guilty, Thaksin could face a jail term of up to 10 years for abusing his authority while in office by facilitating a sweet deal for his wife to buy a prime Bangkok land plot worth Bt772 million from the state.

    The couple were accused of violating articles 4, 100 and 122 of the National Counter Corruption Commission law, and articles 33, 83, 86, 91, 152, and 157 of the Criminal Code, which bar holders of public office and their spouses from entering into a contract with the state.

    In preparation for the historic verdict, Pol Maj-General Amnuay Nimmano, the deputy metropolitan police chief, said about 300 police would be dispatched to provide security at the Supreme Court's division for criminal offences of political office holders.

    The Supreme Court accepted the land case for trial in July 2007 after which arrest warrants were issued for Thaksin and his wife, who were then residing in exile in the UK.

    On January 8, 2008, Khunying Pojaman returned to Thailand to report herself to the court and was released on bail. Then, Thaksin came back to Thailand and denied all charges during a court hearing on March 11, 2008.

    On August 11, both defendants jumped bail, while the court continued its hearings in absentia. The court was earlier scheduled to deliver its verdict on September 17, but it was postponed to today.

    Meanwhile, the anti-government People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD), which has pressed for corruption and related charges against Thaksin, said Thaksin's supporters could step up their offensive if the former premier was found guilty.

    A PAD source said there could be attempts to cause chaos in the city and attacks against the PAD camp at Government House.

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    Re: Thaksin: Supreme Court begins reading verdict on Rachadapisek land case

    Supreme Court rules 6:3 to say Thaksin had authority over FIDF


    The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that Thaksin Shinawatra, when he was the prime minister, had the authority to supervise the Financial Institutions Development Fund.

    The court dismissed claim of Thaksin's lawyer that he did not have authority over the FIDF so he could not abuse his authority to secure the land purchase from the FIDF for his wife.

    The court ruled that prime minister is an official in accordance with Articles 152 and 157 of the National Counter Corruption Act.

    The Nation

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    Re: Thaksin: Supreme Court begins reading verdict on Rachadapisek land case

    Supreme Court rules 5:4 that Thaksin knew of land purchase by wife


    The Supreme Court ruled 5:4 to say that former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra knew about the land purchase by his wife from the Financial Institutions Development Fund.

    The court ruled that with the knowledge, Thaksin also carried out actions that constituted conflict of interest on part of Thaksin as a state official.

    The Nation

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    Re: Thaksin: Supreme Court begins reading verdict on Rachadapisek land case

    Thaksin guilty in land case, gets 2-year imprisonment

    The Supreme Court Tuesday found former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra guilty in the Ratchada land case.

    He was sentenced to 2 years in jail.

    Pojaman Shinawatra, his wife, was found not guilty and the court revoked arrest warrant against her.

    The court found that Thaksin had violated Article 100 and Article 102 of the National Counter Corruption Act, which states that government officials, including prime ministers, and their spouses are prohibited from entering into or having interests in contracts with state agencies under their supervision.

    Pojaman Shinawatra, his wife, was found not guilty and the court revoked arrest warrant against her.


    The Nation

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    Thai ex-PM guilty of corruption
    BBC News

    Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has been found guilty of corruption and sentenced to two years in prison by the Thai Supreme Court.

    In the landmark ruling, he was found to have used political influence to help his wife purchase land from a state agency at a knock-down price.

    The couple fled to the UK in August, saying they would not get a fair trial.

    The decision comes amid growing tension between the former leader's supporters and his opponents.

    The Supreme Court's decision is the first in a series of cases lodged against Mr Thaksin.

    For weeks protesters have demanded the resignation of the government, saying it is too close to Mr Thaksin.

    The administration of Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat - who is Mr Thaksin's brother-in-law - has been virtually paralysed by the protests.

    And correspondents say the verdict is unlikely to pacify the thousands of protesters who have been camped outside the prime minister's office for the past two months.

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    Thaksin says he expected guilty verdict


    Former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra told a Reuters reporter that he had expected a guilty verdict in the land purchase case.

    The reporter, Nopporn Wong-anant, made a long distance phone call to interview the former prime minister after the conviction ruling.

    "No worry. It's political and you know how Thai politics is like," Nopporn quoted Thaksin as saying.

    The Nation

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    Thaksin seems to have much in common with the former Madam President in my country, Chandrika Bandarenaike Kumaratunga. She was in power for 12 years until December 2006.

    Just 3 weeks ago, on October 8, the Supreme Court ordered her to pay Rs. 3 million (around 30,000 USD) to the State, finding her guilty of a corrupt land deal she had entered into during her Presidency. The bribery and corruption authorities were further ordered by the Supreme Court to further investigate the matter.

    The is the second of such Orders by the S. C. since she went out of power in December 2006.

    People anticipate much more to come.

    And she is a devout Buddhist just like Thaksin.

    Also, like for Thaksin, London is her second home with her two children living there.
    Last edited by senaratne; 21-10-08 at 11:56 PM. Reason: last sentence added.

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    Joyful PAD protesters hail a victory
    By Atthayuth Butrsripoom
    The Nation


    As soon as People's Alliance for Democracy protesters heard the Supreme Court's verdict against former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, the group in and around Government House broke into mutual and noisy congratulations - some crying and shouting, "We've won!"

    Activist Veera Somkwamkid, who filed the Ratchadaphisek land case against Thaksin to the Assets Examination Committee, was hailed as a hero. He gave a wai to thank supporters.

    Other PAD demonstrators were shaking hand-clappers and shouting, "Thaksin in jail!" as they reacted to the two-year term handed down by the court.

    The crowd attentively watched the live telecast of the court's ruling, amid dark clouds, strong wind, thunder and slight rain. Although the rain became heavier, more PAD supporters joined the rally.

    Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva, also the opposition leader, said the government must make it clear whether it would ask the UK to extradite Thaksin and what it would do as the agency in charge.

    The government's unclear stance and inaction caused people to question it, he said.

    Upon hearing the verdict, PAD leader Somkiat Pongpaiboon clapped and jumped on PAD's stage, shouting, "Hail PAD, hail the people!" Other key members joined in the congratulations on stage.

    PAD sources yesterday reported receiving hundreds of thousands of baht in donations from domestic and overseas sources.

    Veera thanked the AEC for its work in investigating and pursuing the case.

    "Thaksin now has to serve two years in jail. It's alright for me that he's been sentenced to jail alone as Khunying Pojaman also faces a three-year jail term in a separate tax evasion case," he said.

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    BETWEEN THE LINES
    Is it curtails forever for Thaksin?
    By jintana@nationgroup.com


    What is the future for former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra after the historic verdict over the Ratchadaphisek land case?

    If Thaksin really intends to return to his motherland without serving any of his sentences, he will have to stay in exile for 15 more years. The 59-year-old fugitive, who fled to London with his wife Pojaman on August 11, would be 74 years old then.

    The Supreme Court on Holders of Political Office yesterday sentenced Thaksin to two years in jail for abuse of power and conflict of interest for allegedly helping his wife's purchase of a lucrative Bangkok land from a state agency in 2003 while he was prime minister.

    The case has a statute of limitation of 10 years. It means Thaksin would have to remain a fugitive until he is 69 years old to escape being sentenced.

    However, Thaksin would not be able to return to Thailand immediately but he would have to wait for five more years to escape all charges. Three arrest warrants have been issued for Thaksin since last month, following his failure to show up for the beginning of three trials he faces.

    The three warrants pertain to the following cases:

    - Alleged irregularity in the Bt4-billion loan given by state-controlled Export and Import Bank to the military government of Burma.

    - The two-three-digit lottery case.

    - Amending tax policy to enrich his business (Shin Corp) empire

    If Thaksin fails to appear in court for the first hearing, the cases have a statute of limitation of 15 years. It means that Thaksin would escape from all charges when he is 74.

    If he still aspires to return to politics, he will need to wait for five more years. Article 102 and 174 of the Constitution stipulate the banning of a candidate to be a member of Parliament and a minister respectively.

    In Thaksin's case, the following article would apply for disqualification:

    "… Sentenced to imprisonment and having been discharged less than five years to the Election Day, except for negligence or minor offences committed through negligence."

    Is that too old for the former PM to return to the political stage?

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    Re: Thaksin guilty in Rachadapisek land case: Sentenced to prison.

    [QUOTE=Khun Don;154946]Thai ex-PM guilty of corruption
    BBC News



    The couple fled to the UK in August, saying they would not get a fair trial.


    What he means is, he wouldn't be able to buy a not guilty verdict.
    " The present is an outcome of the past which will have bearings on the future."
    Bhuddhadasa Bhikku 1906-1993

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