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Former PM Thaksin sentenced to 5 years



PHOTO: Thai PBS World

Thailand’s Supreme Court has sentenced former PM Thaksin Shinawatra to 5 years in prison after finding him guilty of illegally owning shares in phone companies with government concessions, as well as conflict of interest, for changing concession fees and excise taxes to benefit his family’s company, Shin Corp. The court heard that Thaksin held a majority of shares, through proxies, in Shin Corp, which was granted a concession by the state, thus violating the Constitution.

The case was suspended after Thaksin fled the country in 2006, but was revived after the proclamation of an organic law that allowed the court to hear the case in absentia. The court also heard that, while serving his second term as PM, Thaksin approved the issuance of an Executive Decree reducing excise tax on mobile phone concessionaires, from 50% to 10%, thus benefiting 2  mobile phone operators, Advance Info Service and Digital Phone Company. Both were affiliated with Shin Corp.

The 2 mobile phone operators received refunds of the excise tax they’d paid, which they used to reduce the concession fees they were to pay to the Telephone Organisation of Thailand and the Communications Authority of Thailand, causing damage to the state.

The court sentenced Thaksin to 2 years for illegal shareholding and 3 years for conflict of interest.

Last year, Thaksin was sentenced to 3 years over Exim Bank’s loan to Myanmar and another 2 years over the 2 and 3 digit lottery project.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World


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  1. Toby Andrews

    Friday, July 31, 2020 at 1:12 pm

    The picture should be captioned.

  2. R.S.

    Friday, July 31, 2020 at 3:09 pm

    buisnessman cuts consumer rates and stiffs monopolies. Wow, that’s some serious kaka

  3. Mike White

    Friday, July 31, 2020 at 8:37 pm

    5 years for illegally owning shares in a company kill someone while driving drunk and that’s OK

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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