Thai court tells 2 to pay $36m in fire truck graft
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Thai court tells 2 to pay $36m in fire truck graft

BANGKOK (AP) — A Thai court has ordered a former Cabinet minister and a former prime minister’s widow to pay $36 million to the city of Bangkok after corruption inflated the purchase price of fire trucks and boats from Austria.

The Central Administrative Court on Wednesday ordered former Deputy Interior Minister Pracha Maleenont and the widow of former Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej to pay 587 million baht ($18 million) each.

The 315 fire trucks and 30 fireboats were bought in 2004 from the Austrian company Steyr-Daimler-Puch for 6.69 billion baht ($207 million). Samak was Bangkok’s governor at the time, and his widow inherited his wealth.

The Supreme Court last year sentenced Pracha and a former Bangkok fire department chief to prison for malfeasance and price fixing over the purchase.