NACC to indict 2 former ministers over rice pledging fraud


BANGKOK, 16 January 2014  The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) has resolved to press charges against former Commerce Minister Boonsong Teriyapirom and his then deputy Phum Saraphol for committing fraud in the government-to-government (G2G) rice deal. 

NACC member Vicha Mahakhun, in his capacity as head of the subcommittee investigating corruption allegations against the government’s rice pledging program, stated that the commission had discovered that the release of rice in stock under a G2G deal with China had never taken place as claimed by the government. He said there were no grounds to confirm that the companies involved in the deal were truly representatives of the Chinese government.

Therefore, the NACC saw fit to file corruption charges against Mr Boonsong and Mr Phum, who were in the posts of Commerce Minister and Deputy Commerce Minister respectively at the time of the deal’s inception. Besides the two, another 15 individuals from those companies claiming to be representing China will also face the same charges.

As for Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, who is at the helm of the National Rice Policy Committee, Mr Vicha said the investigative subcommittee had been instructed to interrogate her before ruling whether she should be charged for negligence of duty.