Saturday, November 15, 2008

Thaksin and Potjaman Divorce

Thaksin, Potjaman end 32-year marriage

By Aekarach Sattaburuth and Thanida Tansubhapol

Bangkok Post

Former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra is reported to have divorced his wife of 32 years Khunying Potjaman, in a move that has shocked many of the couple's friends and colleagues.

Thaksin told People Power party (PPP) MPs at a dinner in Hong Kong on Friday night that his marriage of more than three decades had ended.

"We divorced in order to make everybody feel comfortable," a PPP MP who was at the dinner, quoted Thaksin as saying.

The divorce was sealed at 11.00am yesterday at the Thai consulate in Hong Kong, the source said. Thaksin's announcement shocked everyone at the table which became suddenly silent, said the MP, who declined to be named. Khunying Potjaman was not at the dinner, he added.

A high-ranking government source confirmed the couple had signed the divorce papers at the Thai consulate in Hong Kong.

The divorce took place less than a month after the Supreme Court sentenced Thaksin to two years in jail and acquitted Khunying Potjaman over conflict of interest charges in the Ratchadiphisek land deal case.

The prison sentence prompted the UK to cancel entry visas for Thaksin and his wife.

A political observer said the divorce could be legally motivated to protect the couple's assets, which are mostly held in the name of Khunying Potjaman.

Thaksin's life seems like one big soap opera. In my sick and twisted mind, the first thing I thought was "maybe he was banging Lydia after all." I don't know how this will affect the cases against them or their assets. It is strange that a couple with so many assets between them can just go to an embassy and get divorced like that without a formal declaration and division of property.

Politically, this is intriguing, because who now has the power? The speculation is endless. Will one fall on his or her sword and come home and go to jail in exchange for the freedom of the other? Or will they end up testifying against each other?

The one thing I do know for sure is the worthless columnists at The Nation will have enough material to spew their blather in perpetuity. The Yoonster and Sopon are probably licking their chops at all the red meat material thrown at the floor in front of them.


Kris Koles said... would seem plausible to me that since the vast majority of Thaksin's public assets are in his now ex-wife's name (not the various submerged assets in Switzerland, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bahamas, etc), the divorce may have a practical implication on the unfreezing of some of these assets in consideration of his now ex-wife being found to be Not Guilty in their recent "trial"....

....if she is now a legally seperate person who has not committed or been convicted of any crime, then there would seem to be no legal basis whatsoever to maintain the freeze on her share of the communal assets just because her ex-husband's activities....

Fonzi said...


She has been convicted of a crime. You forgot the tax evasion case that preceded the Ratachadapisek case.

Potjaman is a fugitive also at this point.

Kris Koles said...

....point taken, I forgot about the earlier conviction. But the underlying intent I think remains unfreezing the 70 or so billion baht of assets which apparently are 80 percent or so owned by the now ex-wife, not by Thakisn.......

....whatever the legal penalty might be for her earlier conviction, it would seem implausible that it is a fine of 50 or so plus billion baht.....