Thaksin money problems?

Last updated : 10 June 2007 By Ben Collins

Thaksin's legal team insists the takeover is going smoothly - and that these things take time - but there appears to be at least one stumbling block.

Thaksin's counsel, Noppadon Pattama, confirmed that the ousted Thai PM has asked the Bank of Thailand to release 'an unspecified sum' from his funds in Thailand in order to finance the takeover.

Noppadon was confident the cash would be released because "the money would be used for a good cause". He also insisted, "the money isn't going to be used for any political purpose, and the bid to buy the club isn't politically motivated."

I seriously doubt that, as I argued in a recent post, and Noppadon echoed Thaksin's claim that he wants to use his takeover of City to promote sport in Thailand.

Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva questioned Thaksin's motives for buying City and called for transparency from the central bank, adding "if there is no money taken out we have to examine the source of funds used if he buys the club."

Since we're getting only vague details about the progress of the takeover, we don't know if this is actually stalling Thaksin's bid, but as I made clear recently, I certainly hope something scuppers the deal.

In response to some comments on the messageboard following my recent piece, you'll find specific details about Thaksin's alleged human-rights violations from any search engine.

The best example was when Thaksin announced a 'war on drugs' in 2003, aiming to rid Thailand of illegal drug use within 90 days. Lists of dealers and users were compiled, and within 2 months, 2,000 Thais on the 'blacklist' were dead.

As if that wasn't bad enough, many of the dead were believed to be small-time dealers or not even dealers/users at all.

If you want further, more recent examples, type in 'martial law' - you'll find that many of Thaksin's detractors have mysteriously disappeared.

Someone argued Thaksin's government was the first to be re-elected in Thailand, although since then you've probably heard that his re-election was declared void and his party dissolved by Thailand's Constitution Tribunal because of electoral fraud during those elections.

And might I remind you that criminal and tax evasion charges have also been filed against Thaksin and his family, with the first criminal case due to be heard next month. Yes, some of the claims laid at Thaksin will only be allegations, but there is no smoke without fire.

If you still think the guy's a suitable candidate to run our football club then I think you're seriously misguided.

On a lighter note, Thaksin had to apply for a new passport at the end of May after losing it in Moscow.

Thaksin was in Russia to receive an honorary degree in science from the Prekanov Economic Institute and during the visit he had a case stolen containing his passport, cash and a camera.

And would you believe, Thaksin was 'dining' in McDonald's at the time… McDonald's, eh? Perhaps he is having cashflow problems after all.