Compensation hinges on final ruling
AIRPORTS of Thailand (AOT) can ask the court to order the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) to pay damages for its illegal occupation of two Bangkok airports in 2008, according to Jesada Anucharee, a lawyer at the Lawyers Council of Thailand.
If the court verdict against the PAD becomes final, the company could officially ask a court to enforce the payment of compensation, he said.
According to the Appeals Court, PAD must pay Bt522 million to the company.
This can be done within 30 days, but if the defendants cannot pay the money within the time given, the company can file a complaint to court asking for legal execution officials to seize assets for sale on the market and get the money in return, Jesada said.
Legal execution officials can choose to enforce the law either on all the defendants or on some of them, depending on their ability to pay back all the compensation.
This can last up to 10 years until the debt is cleared, he said.
If the defendants refuse to pay on the grounds that they do not have enough money, the company can take them to Bankruptcy Court to declare that they are bankrupt so that assets protection can be pursued for the benefit of the damaged party, he added.
Payments would be prioritised, according to Jesada.
The defendants and the company can negotiate the payments but if they cannot agree, the defendants would be declared bankrupt and their assets sold.
“The period to clear bankruptcy is 10 years, and if people can clear themselves, they can make legal commitments again,” he said.
The defendants’ lawyers said they are requesting an extension of the deliberation at the Supreme Court and so the case is not yet finalised. They have managed to collect Bt7 million to pay court fees and they have not yet received any confirmation from the court.
After the yellow shirts took over Don Mueang and Suvarnabhumi airports in 2008, the Appeals Court ordered that all 13 accused must pay AOT over Bt500 million in compensation.
The accused PAD members were key yellow-shirt leaders: Chamlong Srimuang, Sondhi Limthongkul, Pibhop Dhongchai, Suriyasai Katasila, Somsak Kosaisuk, Chaiwat Sinsuwong, Somkiat Pongpaibul, Naranyu (Saranyu) Wongkrajang and Sirichai Mai-ngam.
The Appeal Court’s verdict recently went viral, sparking concern among the defendants and their supporters.