11 July 2024

Former TV celebrity Sorayuth Suthasanachinda, convicted of embezzling 138 million baht in advertising fees from The Mass Communications Organization of Thailand (MCOT), said that he is ready to face the consequences of his actions in full awareness that the Supreme Court cannot overturn his conviction in two lower courts.

“I have fought (the case) in accordance with legal process. Whatever the outcome, I have to accept it,” said the well-known news anchor on Instagram today (Tuesday), ahead of the Supreme Court delivering its ruling. His original prison term of 13 years and four months was reduced to 8 years.

Sorayuth said that he had already repaid the 138 million baht to the MCOT and that he accepts the two lower court verdicts and had never thought of fleeing the country. “Of course, I am afraid of being jailed, but I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth, never had a life such that I could not spend time in prison. The past 30 years of working, I would say, has sometimes been tougher than prison, but the most important thing in those 30 years was my freedom.”

Sorayuth admitted that he had never slept well because he had to work every day without a break “but every day I woke up to work, I didn’t feel that I went to work, I just woke up to live my life. Although it was tough, I was happy in my own way.”

“Anybody not in my predicament cannot know what torture it is to wake up each day, knowing I could not live my life as it used to be,” said Sorayuth, describing life after court delivered its original verdict in February 2016.

He said he did not dare even turn on the TV “because I would see things I love, that I used to do before.  I could not stop tears welling up in my eyes. All I can do is to try to forget my past life.”

He said that the past four years without work was the worst period of his life, adding “I was in social prison for four years – four years of fighting the case without happiness for even one single day – feeling the more I fight, the more I lose, but I fought on.”

“Life must go on. At least, I can start a new life, although it will start in prison. The lowest point of life.  Maybe, one day, I can start from square one again.”

He then thanked everyone who provided him with morale support.

Related story: News anchor Sorrayuth sent to jail for embezzlement