Yingluck Shinawatra: Former Thai PM sentenced 5 years imprisonment

Yingluck Shinawatra: Former Thai PM sentenced 5 years imprisonment

Yingluck Shinawatra: Former Thai PM sentenced 5 years imprisonment

"The court found that the defendant is guilty as charged.the court has sentenced her to five years in prison and the court also unanimously agreed that the sentence will not be suspended", the judge said.

Her government was ousted by the military in 2014. Nothing has been heard from Yingluck since she fled the country, and one of her lawyers, Sommai Koosap, told Reuters outside the court on Wednesday that she has not been in contact.

Yingluck Shinawatra, the first Thai female Prime Minister. When Ms Yingluck surprisingly failed to show up in court, the verdict was postponed and an arrest warrant was issued for her.

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The Supreme Court's Criminal Division for Political Office Holders ruled that Yingluck had acknowledged the illegality of government-to-government rice deals but refused to cancel a contract with a Chinese state enterprise. "I have spies", he said, adding that to his knowledge Ms Yingluck has not sought asylum overseas.

Analysts say that since the coup, the junta has attempted to limit the influence of Yingluck and her brother Thaksin. "Therefore, the action of the accused is considered negligence of duty", it said. Last month, the Thai Trade Minister who served in Shinawatra's administration was sentenced to 42 years in jail in the same affair. Losses amounted to US$8 billion (S$10.9 billion), the military government has said. There lives her brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, who also headed the government of Thailand, and then fled overseas because of allegations of abuse of power.

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