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UK revokes visa of Thailand ex-PM convicted of corruption

[JURIST] The British government has revoked the visa of former Thai prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra [BBC profile; JURIST news archive], and his wife Pojamarn Shinawatra according to media reports Saturday. The couple had been residing in Britain prior to Thaksin's conviction [JURIST report] last month on corruption charges [JURIST report] related to a 2003 purchase of land by his wife from the government-controlled Financial Institutions Development Fund [official website]. It is unclear where Thaksin is currently located, but members of the ruling People Power Party (PPP), who support Thaksin, have said that they are not concerned about the rejected visas as there are there are many other countries that would welcome him. AFP has more. The Bangkok Post has local coverage.

Thaksin, who was ousted as Thailand's prime minister in a military coup in 2006, has seen a long series of corruption actions brought against him and his wife. In August, Thai prosecutors asked the Supreme Court to seize over $2 billion [JURIST report] from the Shinawatras' frozen accounts and holdings in relation to the charges. In July, the Thai Attorney General's Office filed corruption charges [JURIST report] against Thaksin for his role in a 2003 resolution reducing fees paid by mobile phone companies to state telecommunications agencies. Later that month, Pojamarn, as well as her step-brother and secretary, were convicted of tax evasion [JURIST report] for transferring $16.3 million worth of stock she transferred to the two. Also that month, the Supreme Court agreed to hear additional charges against Thaksin and 47 other for alleged misconduct [JURIST reports] related to the country's lottery system.

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