Ousted Thai PM’s wife sues graft-buster, newspaper

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Web posted at: 5/2/2007 1:16:42
Source ::: AFP

BANGKOK • The wife of ousted Thai premier Thaksin Shinawatra has sued the military’s top graft-buster and a newspaper for defamation, her lawyer said yesterday.

Pojaman Shinawatra filed the lawsuit over comments that compared her controversial purchase of government land in Bangkok to robbery, lawyer Noppadon Pattama told reporters.

Nam Yimyaem, the head of the junta’s Assets Scrutinising Committee, made the comments in the Post Today newspaper on January 30.

Pojaman also sued the newspaper for carrying the remarks, Noppadol said.

“She sued him and the newspaper for defamation. We used our legal rights. Our former prime minister and his wife and his family do not receive any justice from the committee,” Noppadol said.

“We hope to receive justice from the court,” he added.

The first hearing in the defamation case is expected in early July, the lawyer said.

The land deal, in which Pojaman bought a plot of government land for a bargain at auction, is among the dozen cases that the junta’s anti-corruption team is investigating.

Rooting out alleged corruption was one of the military’s main justifications for the coup.

Nam’s committee-which the military set up after toppling Thaksin’s government in September-has already filed charges of tax evasion and perjury against Pojaman, as well as her step-brother and her personal secretary.



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