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‘Happy’ solution in Shin tax case: AMLO

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Unfair trading of securities possible as agency chief meets PM

Pol General Chaiya Siri-amphankul, secretary-general of the AMLO, said after an urgent meeting yesterday that the solution – details of which are not known – would make the government “happy”.
The meeting was held and chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam yesterday after the Revenue Department insisted there was no legal recourse to levy back taxes on the sale of Shin Corp shares by former premier Thaksin Shinatra’s family to Temasek Holdings of Singapore.
According to the Revenue Department, the statute of limitations on the case had already expired and it could not seek an extension because that would negatively affect the taxpayers in question.
On the other hand, the agency is empowered by law to seek extensions to the statute of limitations on tax cases if such extensions are beneficial to the taxpayers concerned.
“I cannot reveal the details of the meeting yet, but what I can say is that the government will be happy with the solution,” Chaiya told reporters after yesterday’s meeting with Wissanu.
Wissanu and Chaiya then left to meet Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.
Wissanu said separately that Prayut would reveal new information regarding the case.
On Sunday, it was reported that the Revenue Department did not have legal recourse to collect taxes from the Shinawatra family over the controversial multi-billion-baht sale of Shin Corp shares in 2006. 
It said the five-year tax summons limit had already expired.
The Revenue Department had been under considerable pressure from the Office of the Auditor-General to pursue the case. Auditor-General Pisit Leelavachiropas also threatened to take legal action against the head of the Revenue Department over the dispute concerning the former PM’s family.

‘Unfair trading’?
According to AMLO’s stated mandate, the agency is empowered to fight money laundering and the financing of terrorism. There are currently 25 offences that are regarded as money laundering and related illegal |activities.
The offences include those concerning drug trafficking, prostitution, money lending and fraud, securities fraud, abuses of official duties, violations of customs law, terrorism, and gambling involving more than 100 people or funds amounting to more than Bt10 million.
Also covered are participation in criminal networks; acceptance of stolen assets; counterfeiting banknotes, stamps and promissory notes; violations of intellectual property rights; and the counterfeiting of ownership documents, electronic cards and passports.
The list is rounded out with abuses of natural resources and the environment, holding hostages, unfair trading of securities, trading of arms, abuses of election law and human trafficking.
It remained unclear whether the “unfair trading of securities” offence would be cited by the agency to pursue criminal charges against the Shinawatra family, who sold the majority of shares in Shin Corp to Temasek Holdings of Singapore in early 2006.

Published : March 13, 2017

By : THE NATION