[JURIST] The Bangkok Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant Monday for former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] and his wife Pojamarn on charges of stock trading violations. Thaksin has been living in exile since a bloodless military coup [JURIST report] removed him from office last September. He has refused to return to Thailand to face charges because he does not expect to receive a fair trial [JURIST report].
In August, a Thai court issued arrest warrants [JURIST report] for the couple for "evading prosecution." Thaksin and Pojamarn have been accused of abuse of power for personal gain [JURIST report], conflict of interest violations, and dereliction of duty for personal gain in charges stemming from a 2003 land purchase by Pojamarn from the government-directed Financial Institutions Development Fund [official website]. Government authorities have not decided whether to seek Thaksin and Pojarmarn's formal extradition from the United Kingdom. Prior to serving as PM, Thaksin made a fortune in the telecommunications industry. AP has more.