Leaders of the yellow shirt movement are vowing to take police and Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to court for incriminating them on terrorism and criminal charges over their blockade of Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports last year.
Lawyer Suwat Apaipak yesterday said the accused would file criminal and malfeasance charges against the police and Mr Abhisit.
Police last week said they would charge 36 People’s Alliance for Democracy leaders and key supporters for occupying the two airports from Nov 25 to Dec 2 last year in an attempt to overthrow the Somchai Wongsawat government.
The 36 PAD leaders and supporters, including Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya, will face terrorism charges.
They have been ordered to report to police next Thursday. Mr Kasit reported to the police on Monday and denied all charges.
Mr Suwat said the accused found the charges to be baseless because the siege of the two airports “caused no damage to aviation”.
The rest of the accused PAD members will deny the charges when they report to police and then lay criminal charges against the police investigation team and Mr Abhisit, he said.
The prime minister was included because he allowed the police to proceed with the action. Mr Abhisit and the police will face criminal charges for malfeasance and false incrimination, the lawyer said.
Core PAD leader Chamlong Srimuang yesterday insisted he and his colleagues were not worried about the charges because they were the product of a false allegation.
“We believe the charges are exaggerated and disproportionate for actions of ordinary citizens like us,” Maj Gen Chamlong said. “We’re determined to take legal action against everyone involved in this move against us.”
National police chief Patcharawat Wongsuwon said the PAD had every right to file a countersuit against the police.
However, he insisted the police had exercised their utmost prudence in considering witness accounts and evidence before deciding to press terrorism charges against the PAD leaders.
The cabinet yesterday approved 8 million baht in compensation for state agencies and private companies which helped passengers stranded during the airport closures, deputy government spokesman Supachai Jaisamut said.
The Transport Ministry initially had proposed the government endorse about 678 million baht in compensation for affected businesses.
But the cabinet said airlines, including Thai Airways International, and Airports of Thailand had to seek compensation from those who caused the damage to their business.
The cabinet also acknowledged a report of total losses of 19 billion baht to the aviation industry as a result of the airport closure.
By: SURASAK GLAHAN and PRADIT RUANGDIT
Photos By: Manager Online
Airport Seizures: PAD Leaders Vow to Sue PM, Officials over Charges
Leaders of the People’s Alliance for Democracy are vowing to sue Prime Minister Abhisit and police for incriminating them on terrorism and criminal charges over their blockades of Suvarnabhumi and Don Mueang airports last year.
The 36 core members of People’s Alliance for Democracy or PAD and key supporters have faced criminal and terrorism charges for occupying the two Bangkok airports from November 25th to December 2nd last year in an attempt to overthrow the Somchai Wongsawat government.
Somsak Kosaisuk a PAD key leader and New Polictics Party leader said the accused members believe the charges are groundless and said the gathering at the two airports caused no damage to aviation and was within the scope of constitution. Somsak added that he and other accused PAD members will deny all of the charges against them when they report to police on July 16th. He also added that he and the members are ready to fight against all charges and will not escape abroad.
Meanwwhile, another core PAD leader Major General Chamlong Srimuang has insisted that he and his colleagues are not worried about the charges, because they are false allegations. Chamlong noted that he believes the charges are exaggerated and disproportionate for actions for ordinary citizens. Thus, he and the accused members will file criminal charges against the investigating police and MPs for malfeasance and false incrimination.
He added that the Prime Minister is included because he allowed the police to proceed with the actions.
PM Affirms Fair Trial for Airport Seizure Cases
The Prime Minister has insisted the legal action currently faced by the key members of the People’s Alliance for Democracy are not brought on by the government.
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has insisted that his government did not intervene in the cases against the People’s Alliance for Democracy or PAD nor was he and his officials negligent in the case. The PM said he will ensure justice for all sides and will let the legal process run its course for the case
Abhisit reiterated that he and Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban cannot judge those involved in the case and all actions related to the PAD’s cases are made within the scope of law.
The Prime Minister also stated the reshuffle of the Foreign Minister post can be made if the legal action he is facing affects his work but the decision over the matter will not have an impact on the ASEAN meetings.
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban said core leaders of the People’s Alliance for Democracy are eligible to countersue the Prime Minister but commented he should be the one to face the group’s lawsuit as the National Police Office falls under his supervision.
Suthep reiterated the summons for the PAD core leaders and supporters for the forced closure of Suvarnabhumi Airport last year are not a ploy to discredit the group’s New Politics Party.
The Deputy Prime Minister added Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya, one of the PAD supporters summoned for the airport protests, will not resign over this issue in the near future, particularly before the ASEAN meetings in Phuket later this month.
He also insisted a recent poll which suggested the majority of the public want Kasit to step down after the ASEAN meetings will have no impact on the government’s decision on his fate as its judgment will be based solely on his performance.
Suhep said Kasit’s work over the past six months in office shows he is an excellent and professional diplomat.
Meanwhile, appointed Senator Khamnoon Sitthisaman said the PAD is eligible to file a malfeasance suit against the Prime Minister and the court will judge whether the charges of terrorism against the group are plausible.
Khamnoon also expressed dissatisfaction about the possibility that the Prime Minister will remove Kasit from the Cabinet after the ASEAN meetings.
The senator said the premier should not put pressure on the embattled minister but if Kasit really decides to bow out from the Cabinet, it will most likely be from pressure from the government’s key members rather than the airport closure case itself.
He also reiterated the matter will not dampen the PAD’s relationship with the ruling Democrat Party as this issue is the party’s internal affairs and Kasit is not a PAD core leader.