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Appeals Court Sentences Former Minister to Death

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Appeals Court Sentences Former Minister to Death

The Appeals Court on Friday sentenced former deputy minister of commerce, Banyin Tangpakorn to death, instead of life imprisonment for the murder of a judge’s brother.

A former Pheu Thai MP and list MP for Matchima Party, Mr. Banyin served two terms in Nakhon Sawan. During the administrations of Samak Sundaravej and Somchai Wongsawat, he served as deputy minister of commerce.

Banyin Tangpakorn, 58, was convicted of murdering Mr. Veerachai Sakuntaprasert, the brother of judge Panida Sakuntaprasert who handled his share theft case, on February 4, 2020.

Banyin was sentenced to life imprisonment in December 2020 for his confession in the murder case. The murder followed the abduction of Mr. Veerachai. The botched abduction was intended to influence the judge to take side with Banyin.

Based on strong evidence against Banyin and other convicts in the same case, the Appeals Court ruled that they had no choice but to confess.

Narongsak Pomchan, 48, who was also involved in the murder was also sentenced to death instead of life in prison. Four other convicts were sentenced to life in prison.

Court judge pressured

In early February 2020, three to four men kidnapped Veerachai in front of the court and pressured Judge Panida to dismiss the case.

Veerachai’s bruised body was later found in a river in Nakhon Sawan.

The plot was allegedly carried out by Banyin, according to a suspect who was arrested. In the end, Banyin was arrested.

In the share-transfer case, Banyin was sentenced to eight years in prison for document forgery. Banyin will now appeal to the supreme court to overturn his death sentence.

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