Amlo to file charges against ex-Dem's mum

Amlo to file charges against ex-Dem's mum

The Anti-Money Laundering Office (Amlo) expects to file money-laundering charges against the mother of a former Democrat MP today following an Appeal Court order to seize some of her assets.

Amlo's legal specialists recently met Department of Special Investigation (DSI) officials to discuss legal action against fugitive Pakinee Suwannapakdee, a former executive of the defunct First Bangkok City Bank (FBCB), according to a DSI source. Ms Pakinee, the mother of Atavit Suwannapak­dee, a former Democrat MP for Bangkok, had been accused along with several others of embezzling 5 billion baht from the bank.

She fled the embezzlement charges with the statute of limitations on them expiring in October 2012.

Her current whereabouts are still unknown.

However, Amlo now wants to pursue money laundering charges as a result of the Appeal Court's asset confiscation order.

But the anti-money laundering agency is concerned the statute of limitations on these charges might expire because the DSI has yet to accept the case as a special case, which requires approval from the its special case board chaired by Justice Minister ACM Prajin Juntong. The 15-year statute of limitations for money laundering expires on Nov 14 this year, the DSI source said.

According to the source, Amlo was advised to file a complaint with the Economic Crime Suppression Division (ECD) which was responsible for the embezzlement case.

"If the special case board accepts the case, the DSI will take over from the ECD," the source said.

An Amlo investigation into Ms Pakinee's assets revealed she had transferred dozens of land plots to Mr Attavit and other relatives.

The agency froze assets worth about 300 million baht.

The FBCB, with 90% of its lending said to be non-performing, collapsed during the 1997 financial crisis with its assets and liabilities transferred to Krung Thai Bank.

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