Tomorrow thursday is a big day.
The Criminal Court is scheduled Thursday to hand down the verdict on the tax evasion case involving Khunying Pojaman Shinawatra, wife of former prime minister Thaksin.
Pojaman’s fellow defendants include her brother Bhanapot Damapong. The litigation centres on the transfer of Shin shares between the two which was declared as family gift in order to evade tax liabilities. (Nation)
But… we have to remember that the transaction happened in… 1997 ! Yes ladies and gentlemen…
Pojaman [Thaksin’s wife] transferred her Shin Corp shares held by her nominee Duangta Wongpakdi [who was the maid !!!] [in another article, Nation talks about “her private secretary Kanchanapa Honghern”] to Bhanapot [her brother and former president of Shin Corp] on November 7, 1997.
The shares were worth Bt738 million and Bhanapot failed to meet his tax liability amounting to Bt270 million.
The transaction came to the attention of the authorities in 2000, after the National Counter Corruption Commission (NCCC) uncovered evidence in connection with its investigation on assets declared by Thaksin upon assuming office.
The NCCC report prompted the Revenue Department to open a tax probe on pojaman and Bhanapot in 2001.
The probe, supervised by Sirote, focused on taking one-sided statements from the two without verifying the information nor examining circumstances and evidence surrounding the transaction.
Sirote’s hasty ruling to classify the transaction as a “family gift” and grant tax exemption for Bhanapot has deprived the state of revenue. (Nation)
And here is another version : “In November 1997, Pojaman transferred 4.5 million shares of Shinawatra Computer and Communication, worth Bt738 million, to Bhanapot through the account of her maid Duangta Wongpakdi. She presented the transfer as a share sale in the stock market, which is tax-exempt. This was a deliberate deception, the lawsuit claims.
In 2001, Bhanapot and Pojaman told officers of the Revenue Department the share transfer was not subjected to tax as it was “a gift” from Pojaman to Bhanapot. ” (Nation)
Nice huh ? ! You order a third party (your maid !) to give me 21 millions USD… and it’s tax free because I say -politely- to the Revenue Department “it’s a family gift“.
And the Revenue Departement says -politely- “but of course Khun ThaiCrisis. If you say so. Our pleasure“.
Bona fide gifts might be non taxable income. But in this case, apparently, Pojaman didn’t give “her” shares to her brother… But ask a third party (who was holding “her” shares) to give the shares to her brother…
Timeline : 1997, 2000, 2001, october 2007 (start of trial), july 2008 verdict.
The whole story is highly tasty. And it’s echoes… directly the asset concealment case against Thaksin himself (in 2001)… He was acquitted (judges voted 8 to 7), after his landslide victory at general elections.
So we can see that someway it’s a… tradition for the Thaksin’s family members to use… maid or secretary as nominees to hold shares (valued at dozen of millions USD) for them…
What a strange family. And what a strange country.
Anyway see you tomorrow… It’s going to be tasty.