The Supreme Court of Thailand has agreed to hear a case involving a lottery scheme against the former cabinet of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. The court will begin hearing testimony in the case in September.
Along with former cabinet members, three current members may lose their jobs which could impact the government’s projects. Labor Minister Uraiwan Thienthong, Deputy Transport Minister Anurak Jureemas, and Finance Minister Surapong Suebwonglee are the three current members in jeopardy.
Although some anticipated the Ministers would step down, they have continued to maintain their positions despite speculation. One said as there was no legal precedent he would continue to do his job for the time being.
The lottery scheme was started back in 2003 under the Thaksin government. The case includes up to forty six others and was said to prevent thousands of dollars of revenue to going to the government as it should. Part of the allegations are procedural in nature. Thaksin and his cabinet legalized the lottery with a decree instead of seeking parliamentary approval as he should have.
Meanwhile Thaksin and his wife, who is facing tax evasion and other charges stemming from the purchase of a piece of prime Bangkok property, have fled Thailand for the UK and have had funds frozen. Neither is anticipated to return as it would mean certain arrest.