Thaksin Convicted of Acting as PM while being PM

It is illegal to criticize court decisions in Thailand and I am certainly not going to do so.

From the Bangkok Post:

The landmark verdict is quite significant in the sense that even if there is insufficient evidence to nail a political office holder on graft charges or malfeasance in office, the court can still fault the person in question for breach of political ethics in accordance with the anti-corruption law.”

So, the need for judges to have evidence in reaching a verdict is now definitively rejected (as it appeared to be in the case of the three lawyers who were thrown in jail during the disappearing million baht in a khanom box-gate – the judge said he saw the three lawyers talking so that meant there was a conspiracy).

These were the relevant decisions by the nine person panel of judges:

9-0 – The 1999 anti-corruption act is effective.

9-0 – Appointment of Assets Examination Committee is constitutional with authority to investigate cases.

9-0 – Financial Institutions Development Fund, the land seller, is a government agency.

6-3 – The prime minister has oversight of FIDF.

5-4 – Thaksin Shinawatra violated the 1999 anti-corruption act.

7-2 – Khunying Pojaman Shinawatra is not guilty and her arrest warrant will be cancelled.

7-2 – The Ratchadaphisek land plot and transaction money will not be confiscated.

9-0 – Thaksin is sentenced to a two-year jail term.

(Thanks to Bangkok Pundit for posting this – it comes from the vile Nation which makes me feel dirty just looking at the website these days.)

Interesting split decisions, especially given how the judges were selected for appointment and how they are recompensed. Charges against the Khunying were dropped on a 7-2 decision on the basis that she was not a government official – presumably the minority opinion was that she was a secret government official? Perhaps there was another explanation.