Thailand's military ruler says authorities are searching for former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, whose whereabouts are unknown after she failed to show up for a contentious trial verdict and a Supreme Court judge said a warrant would be issued for her arrest.

Yingluck is facing a 10-year prison term for alleged negligence in overseeing an ill-fated rice subsidy program that cost the state billions of dollars.

A decision was expected to be handed down Friday but Yingluck never appeared, fueling immediate speculation — so far unproved — that she might have left the country.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, the military chief who toppled Yingluck's government in a 2014 coup, says the government did not know where she was but was looking for her.