Abhisit's draft-dodge case returns

Abhisit's draft-dodge case returns

The Judge Advocate-General's Department is seeking a further extension to a deadline to challenge a court ruling that revoked the dismissal of former prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva from the army reserve.

Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon said the department has sought a 30-day extension of the deadline to appeal against the ruling in the Supreme Court.

The deadline has already been extended once and expired on Friday.

The case involves a long-standing draft-dodging accusation against Mr Abhisit who allegedly used fake documents when applying to join the army as a lecturer at the Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy in 1987. The job exempted him from military conscription and gave him the rank of acting sub-lieutenant.

Former defence minister ACM Sukumpol Suwannathat dismissed Mr Abhisit from the army reserve retroactively on on Nov 8, 2012, stripping him of his military rank and army service record on the grounds he did not go through the conscription process as required by law.

The dispute was heard in the Civil Court which ruled in 2015 that Mr Abhisit had used false documents when he applied for the job and that the Democrat leader had lacked the necessary qualifications.

However, in November last year the Appeal Court overturned the ruling and revoked former defence minister ACM Sukumpol's retroactive order dismissing Mr Abhisit from the army reserve. It said Mr Abhisit had left military service and the retroactive order against him was not legally binding.

ACM Sukumpol recently called on Gen Prawit to take legal action against the Democrat leader for alleged draft-dodging before the statute of limitations expires.

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