Former Thai Prime Minister sentenced to five years in prison over criminal negligence

Former Thai Prime Minister sentenced to five years in prison over criminal negligence

Yingluck Shinawatra was found guilty of criminal negligence and sentenced in absentia

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The former Prime Minister of Thailand has been sentenced to five years in prison. 

Yingluck Shinawatra was convicted of criminal negligence by the country's Supreme Court. 

The charges she was faced with pertained to mishandling a subsidy scheme for rice which is reported to have cost Thailand at least £8bn.

The court judges ruled she was aware of falsified deals for rice, but Shinawatra denies this, insisting she was not responsible for the day-to-day operation of the scheme.

Shinawatra was ousted in 2014 shortly before a military coup and later impeached.

After denying the charges and insisting she was a victim of political persecution, she fled the country to the United Arab Emirates to take refuge in Dubai and was sentenced in absentia. 

Public opinion over the conviction is divided, for Shinawatra remains popular with poor and rural voters.