PPT reproduces an emailed post from Rose Amornpat:
Whistle Blower and the Dictator, Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha
By Chatwadee Rose Amornpat
Switzerland had been known for ages among big-time thieves including crooked politicians, super wealthy businessmen and corrupt civil servants in Thailand to be their choice of destination for their ill-gotten wealth and loots from their illegitimate business activities. Such thieves also included tax dodgers, gambling-den owners, sex traffickers, drug smugglers and top Thai royalists who do not pay their fair share of income taxes.
This was due to the fact that Swiss law entrenched bank secrecy in 1934, making it a criminal offence to reveal a client’s identity.
But in recent years, the Swiss government is cracking down on foreign criminals who deposit their loots in Swiss banks with the bank being fined heavily and the identity of the depositors revealed. Thus these criminals, including Thai criminals, are moving their money away from Switzerland and at a rather fast speed.
United States has taken the toughest stance. It wants 11 Swiss banks to hand over their American clients’ names. In the first big breach in Swiss secrecy, UBS agreed in 2009 to pay a $780 million dollars fine for aiding tax evasion and turned over data on more than 4,400 accounts. A few months later, several more banks handed over client details to Swiss authorities.
In 2012, the U.S. found HSBC including their Swiss branch laundered hundreds of millions of dollars of drug cartel money. As a result, the bank had to pay $1.9 billion in settlement.
I was not surprised when I learned that Chief of the Thai military junta, Gen. Prayuth Chan-Ocha was so upset at a Thai whistle blower. Mrs. Rinda Paruechabutr, a 45-year-old member of Thai Red Shirts who was unfairly arrested on Thursday, July 9, 2015 for allegedly spreading false rumours in her Facebook account concerning General Prayuth and his wife transferring some Thai Bt. 10 billion (US $303 million dollars) to a bank in Singapore.
My research and my discussion with my sources in Thailand reveal that Singapore is now the destination of choice for money laundry for Thai crooks! Gen. Prayuth and the rest of his top brass all hold bank accounts in Singapore. Besides Thai royals have close business relationship with Tamasek Holdings, an investment company owned by the government of Singapore.
Gen. Prayuth’s police invoked Article 116 of the Computer Crimes Act which is similar to Article 112 of the lese majeste law to arrest Mrs. Rinda Paruechabutr, a mother of two children and a sole bread winner of the family. Her husband died some three years ago during the massacre at Rachaprasong Democracy Uprising by a military sniper.
Article 116 of the Thai Criminal Code gives an unlimited power to the police and the military to jail anyone without bail for posting anything on the internet which the Thai authorities – the police or the military alike – deem an act of sedition and/or arousing unrest in society. Such universal coverage by the law is indeed a travesty of justice and a breach to freedom of expression and speech. Article 116 almost always a concomitant charge on the accused with Article 112. Mrs. Rinda was denied bail and her fate is unknown.
Just like any 112 prisoners, Mrs. Rinda was interrogated, non-stop, for 16 hours with no food or drink. This was and by design in order to demoralize her to make confession. As usual, under duress, she was paraded to a news conference at the police headquarters. If convicted, she could face up to 12 years for “violating Computer Crime Act, inciting unrest, and causing panic among the public.” Oddly enough, there was no panic and no unrest except the upset and angry Prayuth, the military dictator when learning of the rumour.
Nontheless, Mrs. Rinda explained that she had no intention to destabilize the state. She said she had invoked her rights as a Thai citizen to criticize the junta chief who is a public figure in her view.
One of Rinda’s children, Nong Omm, aged 15, is making a poignant appeal with teary eyes to the Thai junta and the international communities via Youtube to to release their mother unconditionally. She said that now that her mother is in jail, no one is taking care of her and her sister who is 7 years of age. Both are in school at this time. But in a long run, they may be forced to quit school. If such event is realized, they may have to sell anything on the streets to make ends meet. Though their mother left them some money but the fund is fast running out.
I wish to make a personal appeal to anyone reading this article to please contact your government and/or any charitable and human rights organization to help these poor children.
General Prayuth Chan-Ocha came into power with the blessing of the Thai king and his privy councils to seize power illegally from a democratically elected government of PM Yingluck Shinawatra. The world must not recognize his regime and we must continue to condemn his and his military thugs who are seizeing control of the country. Peace and democracy loving Thai people are being held hostage at this moment in Thailand by this thief-in-uniform.
The majority of the Thai people in Thailand are so helpless to express their mind, due to the ever-present threat from the military thugs who are ready to invade anyone’s home at night if the owner dares to speak out against this regime publicly. Thailand is now a lawless country and it is very dangerous to do any business there, because there is no stability there socially, economically and politically.
I would continue to urge President Barrack Obama of the USA, PM David Cameron of the UK, PM Tony Abbott of Australia, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission and the rest of the civilized nations to initiate a more severe boycotts against Thailand and stop issuing visas to anyone associated with the Thai military junta until Mrs. Rinda Paruechabutr is released, true democracy is restored including the abolishment of the despicable lese majeste law.
Then and only then Thai people can be free.