Athapol Yaisawang hopes to start out on the right foot as attorney-general and has vowed to work righteously and not favour anyone.
Athapol: ‘I owe no debts to anyone’
In an exclusive interview with the Bangkok Post, Mr Athapol declared he will work "professionally, openly, fast and with integrity".
His mission is to build public confidence in prosecutors so that people know they can turn to them for justice.
Mr Athapol's first move has been to appoint a prosecutor's office spokesman to announce decisions in high-profile cases and publish them on the office's website. This information will keep the public updated on essential details in legal cases.
The attorney-general's actions, however, are irreversible, he said referring to a recent decision by his predecessor Julasingh Vasantasingh not to prosecute former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra for allegedly inciting terrorist acts during red-shirt protests in 2010.
Mr Athapol will have a prominent case of his own to decide upon soon. And it promises to be divisive.
On Oct 31 he is due to decide whether to indict Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva and former Democrat secretary-general Suthep Thaugsuban for their role in the political violence in 2010.
Mr Abhisit was prime minister and Mr Suthep his deputy at the time. They are accused of ordering security forces to crack down on the protest which led to the deaths of red-shirt protesters.
The case was forwarded to prosecutors by the Department of Special Investigation.
"I believe that on the day I announce my decision, there will be many more people loving me as well as hating me," he said.
However, he insisted he will not let what people think of him hold him back.
"I'm not here to please anyone because I'm indebted to no one," Mr Athapol said.
He is also unconcerned by accusations in some quarters that he is a yellow shirt who has begun to turn pale red.
Mr Athapol has helped handle major cases including those investigated by the disbanded Assets Scrutiny Committee, and dissolution cases against the Thai Rak Thai Party and the Democrat Party.
The Constitution Court later dissolved Thai Rak Thai while the Democrats survived.
Now 63, Mr Athapol has two more years in the attorney-general's post before his mandatory retirement.
Setting out his priorities, he pledged to work more closely with the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) to help avoid conflicting opinions in cases.
A coordinator will be assigned to every case in which the agencies work together to monitor progress in proceedings.
If the NACC and prosecutors do not agree on an indictment, prosecutors will consult with the commission through a joint panel.
In cases involving political post holders, at least three members must be appointed to the panel to iron out any differences.
"We will not be colluding. We will go by the book as the facts and evidence stand," Mr Athapol said.
Teamwork will move cases along faster although the joint panel may not always be necessary. For the sake of openness, decisions in cases will be divulged to the public, he said.
There have been cases where the NACC has ignored prosecutors' reservations and sought court action. One of them was the fire trucks and boats procurement case.
The Supreme Court last month handed jail terms to former deputy interior minister Pracha Maleenont and the city's fire department chief Pol Maj Gen Athilak Tanchukiat.
Mr Athapol said the NACC sometimes tends to file court action against too many people on the same charges, which hinders evidence gathering.
He said he is free to think and act with full support from fellow prosecutors who voted him to the top post.
His decisions on cases could upset political parties. But his job is to keep a balance between defending the state's interests and defending the rights of the people. He must also lead prosecutors on the right path with commitment to honesty.