Fugitive Thai PM Divorces

Split thought to shelter couple's assets as UK boots Thaksin; may have fled to Dubai
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 17, 2008 6:07 AM CST
In this July 14, 2006 file photo, ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of Thailand, right, and his wife Pojaman,left, attend Thai Rak Thai Party in Bangkok, Thailand. Thaksin and Pojaman, who married...   (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit, File)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Thaksin Shinawatra, the former prime minister of Thailand, has divorced his wife Potjaman—a fellow fugitive—after 32 years of marriage, reports the Financial Times. Thaksin is said to have left London for Dubai after the British government revoked their visas, citing their convictions on tax evasion and conflict of interest. Thai political analysts have speculated that the couple divorced for financial reasons, as most of their assets are in Potjaman's name.

Thaksin won two elections in Thailand before his 2006 ouster in a military coup. Since the resumption of democracy his allies have controlled the government; the current prime minister is Thaksin's brother-in-law. Opponents of the former leader continue to occupy Bangkok's government buildings and have vowed to continue their protest until the current administration resigns.