Pareena denies improper land use: “I was an honourable chicken farmer”

Palang Pracharath Party MP Pareena Kraikrupt lashed out against her critics after the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) said the parliamentarian is guilty of severe ethical misconduct for encroaching on a protected land forest reserve. This marks the first time the NACC has ever found a parliamentarian guilty.

Pareena took to Facebook late Wednesday to defend her innocence, asking the Thai legal system to have some sympathy for a simple chicken farmer – a profession Pareena says she had before becoming a parliamentarian.

“I would like to confirm here that the following land was purchased from previous farmers and in accordance with Thailand’s Land and Building Tax Act,” Pareena wrote. “In the past, I have worked honourably and dutifully as a chicken farmer. I paid my taxes and I have also asked for land certification before I became a parliamentarian!”

NACC spokesman Niwatchai Kasemmongkol said Wednesday the commission had found Pareena guilty for land corruption, citing her severe misconduct as a lawmaker and failure to comply with the laws and regulations in protecting the country’s natural resources and interests.

“Whether directly or indirectly, this is an act carried out by an MP that is considered a severe infringement of ethics,” the spokesman said.

The NACC announced that they will be filing the case to the Supreme Court’s Criminal Division for Political Office Holders, without going through prosecutors.

If the Supreme Court accepts the lawsuit and then finds her guilty, Pareena will be immediately stripped of her MP status and banned from politics for life.

The embattled parliamentarian added that this was going to be the only official announcement she will be making on the case until the court makes any decisions.

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