PPRP official told to return pricey shoes

PPRP official told to return pricey shoes

Jureeporn: In hot water over gifts
Jureeporn: In hot water over gifts

Jureeporn Sinthuprai, a member of the ruling Palang Pracharath Party (PPRP), may face a corruption probe for accepting two pairs of expensive shoes unless she returns them, says Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, who also serves as the government's legal expert.

She can avoid legal punishment if she returns the shoes to the giver or relinquishes them to the agency she works for during a certain period stipulated by law, Mr Wissanu said. If the recipient does not know the value of the item received, he or she can tell the agency, Mr Wissanu said.

As to whether Ms Jureeporn may have known whether the value of the shoes exceeded the 3,000-baht limit set by the National Anti-Corruption Commission, Mr Wissanu said "it's all about common sense".

The best thing for her is to hand them over to the agency she works under so she can be absolved of any wrongdoing, he said.

Ms Jureeporn is a political official attached to the Secretariat of the Prime Minister. On Wednesday, Ms Jureeporn said a man named Sudsayam Makkaew and his sister showed up at her house on March 13.

The sister claimed she runs a garment factory in Roi Et, Ms Jureeporn said, adding it was the first time she had met them. She said they gave her a pair of women's shoes as a gift and offered to sell clothes to her. However, Ms Jureeporn said she did not pay them any mind.

Later, the duo returned and gave her a pair of men's shoes for her husband, she added.

Ms Jureeporn is already in hot water over an alleged recording of her and Seksakol Atthawong, former aide to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, talking about the country's lottery quota.

In the clip, posted on Facebook by Sittha Biabangkerd, Mr Seksakol can be heard telling Ms Jureeporn he took 15 million baht from another man and used it to finance an election campaign. In it, Mr Seksakol said he did not know his benefactor was somehow linked to the lottery quotas.

Both Mr Seksakol and Ms Jureeporn later admitted that the voices on the leaked audio clip were theirs. Mr Seksakol said the conversation was a joke and part of it was doctored to discredit the government. On Monday, he announced his resignation as an aide to the PM.

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