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Page last updated at 18:11 GMT, Friday, 5 December 2008

Thaksin's ex-wife back in Bangkok

Pojaman Shinawatra and her ex-husband Thaksin Shinawatra  in July 2006
Pojaman and Thaksin are reported to have divorced in Hong Kong

The ex-wife of ousted Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has returned to Thailand, despite being convicted there for tax evasion.

Pojaman Shinawatra arrived at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport on a flight from Hong Kong on Friday.

In July, she was sentenced to three years in jail, but was released on bail and left the country with her then husband shortly afterwards.

Pojaman and Thaksin are reported to have divorced in Hong Kong in November.

No reasons were given for the separation after 32 years of marriage.

In October Thaksin was found guilty of corruption and sentenced to two years in prison in his absence.

He travelled to Britain after being deposed in 2006, but the British authorities revoked the couple's visas in November when they were thought to be travelling in East Asia. His whereabouts remain unclear.

Pojaman was found guilty of evading tax of 546m baht ($16.3m) in a 1997 shares transfer in the family telecoms business.

Protest threat

Immigration police chief Lt Gen Chatchawal Suksomjit told the Associated Press news agency that on her return, she "cleared immigration like everyone else".

Despite the Thai airport authorities claiming everything is back to normal in their airports, I'm still stuck
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Police told Thai TV that she was not detained before leaving the airport because the appeal against her conviction was still ongoing.

Bangkok's international airport has only just reopened after a week-long blockade by anti-government protesters.

The People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protesters had camped out at the airport for eight days, virtually closing down the country's aviation links.

The PAD accuses the government of being a proxy for Thaksin but they have been unable to win any election to replace him or his allies, who retain strong support from the rural poor.

The government has less than a month in which to find a new prime ministerial candidate, but the protesters say they will return to the streets if they dislike the choice.

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