Thaksin still wants to buy EPL club, says lawyer

BANGKOK: Thailand’s ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra still plans to buy English Premiership side Manchester City despite authorities freezing US$1.5bil of his assets, his lawyer said yesterday. 

“It will not affect his intention to buy Manchester City,” his lawyer Noppadon Pattama told reporters. 

“The freezing of his money could delay any investment, for example to purchase Manchester City. But I don’t think we’ll have a problem. We still intend to carry on with the deal. We will find a solution,” Noppadon said. 

In a statement late on Monday, City confirmed they were uncertain as to the implications of the assets freeze and said the club were in discussions with Thaksin about the latest development. 

A powerful anti-corruption team late on Monday ordered a freeze on 21 accounts holding 52.9bil baht (US$1.52bil) belonging to Thaksin and his family. 

The money includes much of the profits from last year’s sale of Thaksin’s Shin Corp telecom giant to Singapore’s Temasek Holdings. 

The committee also ordered a freeze on an unspecified number of personal accounts held by Thaksin and his wife Pojaman, citing evidence that Thaksin had broken the law. 

However, the order only affects banks in Thailand, and Thaksin’s overseas assets are largely unknown. 

Thaksin was ousted from power by the military last September and splits his time between a home in London and travelling around Asia. 

Thaksin, 57, had been considered the front-runner in the Manchester City takeover, estimated at around £100mill (US$197mil). – AFP 

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