Bangkok, Oct 6 (IANS) A Thai court on Tuesday rejected a lawsuit filed by former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra against the attorney-general and three other prosecutors for alleged malfeasance in their handling of the rice-pledging case against her.
In her lawsuit filed on September 29, Yingluck accused Trakul Winitnaiyaphak and three other prosecutors — Chutichai Sakhakorn, Surasak Treerattrakul and Kittinan Thatpramuk — of causing damage to others in their handling of the case against her in the Supreme Court’s Criminal Division, the Bangkok Post reported.
According to the lawsuit, the attorney-general and the three other prosecutors failed to properly examine all evidence and witnesses to clarify contentious points against the former premier, including allegations of corruption and dereliction of duty, as required by the law on criminal procedures against holders of political office.
However, the criminal court ruled that their actions were lawful.
The court said Yingluck’s accusations were not backed up by solid evidence but only extracts from news media which were unofficial.
It added that the prosecutors had properly complied with the law on criminal procedures against holders of political positions and related regulations.
The court found that the prosecutors had not mishandled their duty and had no intention to persecute the defendant, and ordered the dismissal of Yingluck’s lawsuit.
The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) of Thailand has accused the former prime minister of using the rice-pledging scheme to gain votes from farmers and win the national general election in 2011. If found guilty, she could face a maximum sentence of 10 years in jail.
The NACC concluded that the implementation of the rice scheme from 2011 to 2014 resulted in a posted loss of 518 billion baht (about $14 billion), meaning about 200 billion baht (about $5 billion) per year, and the state would take about three decades to repay the debts resulting from the loss incurred using the taxpayers’ money.
In January, she was impeached and banned from politics for five years.