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Thailand: Prosecutor General’s Office accuses former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of lese majeste

The Attorney General’s Office Thailand reported this Wednesday that it will file formal charges against the former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra for the crime of lese majeste, punishable by 3 to 15 years in prison.

The accusation against Thaksin, who returned to the country last August after spending 15 years in self-exile, is linked to statements made in 2015 against the Privy Council of the Royal House of Thailand during an interview with a South Korean news agency.

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The former president then assured that the monarchical organization was behind the coup d’etat military campaign in May 2014 that overthrew the government of Yingluck ShinawatraThaksin’s younger sister.

At a press conference, representatives of the Public Ministry indicated that they will present the case in court on June 18, accepting a postponement requested by Thaksin’s legal representative, who is infected with covid-19 and was unable to attend today’s consultation where the responsible. decision was reported.

Prosecutors believe that with his statements Thaksin could have committed a crime under Thai law, despite having been committed outside the country.

The decision announced today comes after the Public Prosecutor’s Office investigated the accusation for months, notified last January to the defendant himself, who declared himself innocent.

Thaksin ShinawatraA central figure in Thai politics in recent decades, he returned to Thailand on August 22 last year and was sent directly to prison to serve eight-year sentences for crimes of corruption and abuse of power.

However, the former leader did not spend the night in prison and was admitted that same day to the Police Hospital of Bangkokwhere he served his sentence until he was allowed to continue his sentence under house arrest in mid-February.

During his stay in hospital, Thaksin received a royal pardon from the monarch in September. Vajiralongkornwhich reduced the accumulated sentences from eight years in prison to one, which he will serve this August.

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Thaksin’s return, on the same day that a coalition led by the party formed the Government Thai Pheu -linked to the Shinawatra clan-, and the concatenation of decisions in his favor have been interpreted as a sign of reconciliation between Thailand’s pro-military and pro-monarchist elite with the president’s circle, considered for many years the country’s number one enemy .

Thaksin was Prime Minister of Thailand from 2001 until he was deposed by a coup d’état in 2006, while participating in New York in the United Nations General Assemblyand returned briefly in 2008, when he decided to leave the country.

Despite his self-exile, the politician was considered Phue Thai’s shadow mentor and maintained his notable influence on the Thai electorate through his populist policies.

Source: Elcomercio

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