The Appeals Court today (Aug 29) upheld jail sentence for former TV anchor Sorrayuth Suthassanachinda after finding him guilty of cheating state-owned channel MCOT of over 138 million baht in advertising revenue between 2005 and 2006.
The charges were filed by the National Anti Corruption Commission against four defendants. They are Mrs Pichapa Iamsa-ard, an MCOT employee; Rai Som Company; Mr Sorrayuth, Rai Som Company’s owner; and Ms Montha Theeradet, Rai Som Company’s employee. According to the lawsuit, Sorrayuth founded Rai Som Co in 2004. The company then had a contract with MCOT to co-produce the Kui Kui Khao news programme. Under the contract, Rai Som was allocated advertising slots of between two and five minutes during the news programme. If its advertisements exceeded the time slots, Rai Som was supposed to pay MCOT a rate of at least 200,000 baht per minute. However, the four defendants allegedly conceal the records of extra advertising time from February 4, 2005 to June 30, 2006 amounted to 138.79 million baht. On February 29, 2016, the first court found the four defendants guilty in cheating the MCOT. Mrs Pichapa was sentenced to 20 years in jail while Mr Sorrayuth and Ms Montha was given 13 years and four months each jailterm. The court also ordered Rai Som Co to pay 80,000 baht fine. The Appeals Court today (Aug 29) upheld the first court’s verdict. At the court appearance, Sorrayuth denied all the charges and said he would appeal to the Supreme Court. His lawyer is preparing necessary documents to seek bail for Sorrayuth.
Earlier he was granted release on a 2-mllion baht bail by the first court. Thai PBS