Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul

Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul (also known as Num) was arrested at 5:30 p.m. on 1 April 2010. The 38 year old man in Pathum Thani Province was arrested by police for a video program called “Thailand’s Way Out” (“ทางออกประเทศไทย”) on the www.norporchorusa.com website that was considered lese majeste. Other reports suggest that the arrest was on 28 March. Apparently, the program had been shown on the red shirt People’s Channel and police had obtained a search warrant to search the People’s Channel premises.

The charges against him, however, related to the website listed above that included considerable anti-monarchy material and the case sought to warn Thais who posted to overseas-based websites or provide information to such sites.

The police stated that Tanthawut had confessed to distributing the statement with the screen name “Red Eagle.” Police say there are 2 to 3 other people being investigated. The police made the ludicrous claim that the arrest was unrelated to the Abhisit Vejjajiva government’s dispute with the red shirt movement.

The police have filed charges under Section 112 of the Criminal Code which covers lese majeste and Section 14(3) of the Computer Crimes Act, meaning that the defendant could potentially face decades in prison.

Tanthawut denied the charges in court, which meant that he received no bail. His case came to court in early February 2011. The public prosecutor submitted a list of 12 witnesses, while the defendant submitted a list of 6.

Tanthawut’s trial began on 4 February 2011. During the trial, Tanthawut “told the court that he did not post the allegedly offensive messages and he was forced to confess by police, and insisted that he is not the administrator of http://www.norporchorusa.com.”;

Earlier, Tanthawut said that “he was the owner of a company which designed and developed websites for customers mostly in the tourism and hotel businesses. In March 2010, a person contacted him at his website, http://www.redthai.org, asking him to design a logo and background for the website. They later corresponded through email, and he received a link to access the website via FTP (File Transfer Protocol). Through the link, he found one folder, but he could not go further than that.”

From the time that he was arrested, the police have cajoled him to confess to this “crime” with serious consequences. This is standard practice in cases involving the monarchy as the state authorities prefer to avoid trials and any scrutiny of their often flimsy “evidence.”

In Tanthawut’s case, they used his young son as the “bait” to force a confession. Initially, when he did not confess, he and “his 10-year-old son spent the night at the police station. The next morning, he woke up when someone came into the cell and told him that he did not love the king and he was a dangerous person. The police then resumed the interrogation, and repeated that he should sign quickly so that he could go back to be with his son, or else the social welfare department would come to adopt his son.” He “confessed.”

However, he soon “retracted the confession … and insisted to the court that he was not an administrator of the website and did not post the messages.”

On 15 March 2011, the court found Tanthawut guilty as charged – no surprises there – and sentenced him to a total of 13 years in prison. This is another draconian decision meant to protect the elite-dominated regime and the royalist ideology that underpins it.

On 21 March 2011, his lawyers went to the Appeals Court with 1.3 million baht in cash as a guarantee for Tanthawut while the case was appealed. As usual, his request for bail was denied, on the usual grounds that the charges are “serious” and that he “might flee.”

By April 2012, with no apparent progress on his appeal – yet another example of the cruelty inflicted on lese majeste victims – he will also seek to withdraw his appeal to seek a royal pardon.  However, before he does that, he wants to know the outcome of yet one more bail application, made in February 2012.

In August he withdrew his appeal so that he could apply for a royal pardon.

The pardon finally came on 5 July 2013.

Media reports on Tanthawut’s case

AP, 5 July 2013: “Thai web designer convicted of defaming king freed

Prachatai,15 October 2012: “We think the same: A Letter from Thanthawut

Prachatai, 23 August 2012: “Release of two lèse majesté convicts today delayed

Prachatai, 3 April 2012: “Amphon withdraws appeal and will seek royal pardon

Prachatai, 23 March 2011: “Thanthawut denied bail”

Prachatai, 16 March 2011: “Nor Por Chor USA web designer sentenced to 13 years in jail”

Bangkok Post,15 March 2011: “Webmaster gets 13 yrs for lese majeste”

AP, 15 March 2011: “Thai Webmaster Gets 13 Years in Prison”

Prachatai, 11 February 2011: “Court to rule on Thanthawut’s case on 15 March”

Prachatai, 11 February 2011: “Update on trial of Thanthawut Thaweewarodomkul”

Prachatai, 5 February 2011: “First hearing of alleged NorPorChorUSA administrator”

Prachatai, 12 August 2010: “Trial of Norporchor USA webmaster set for February next year”

Prachatai, 2 April 2010: “Webmaster of www.norporchorusa.com arrested”

Bangkok Pundit, 2 April 2010: “Another lese majeste arrest”

36 responses

2 04 2010
Further updated: Another lese majeste charge and Sondhi’s case « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] 2: PPT has included a page for Tantawut at our Pending Cases section, with a picture. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Remembering lese [...]

2 04 2010
More on Tantawut lese majeste « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] on Tantawut lese majeste MCOT (1 April 2010) has reported on the case of  Tantawut Taweewarodomkul, arrested for lese majeste. Adding to earlier details, it is stated that “Police searched his [...]

11 08 2010
Updates on Da Torpedo and Red Eagle « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Updates on Da Torpedo and Red Eagle Prachatai has an account of recent events concerning Darunee Charnchoensilpakul’s bail request and the trial of the webmaster of the Norporchor USA website,  Thanthawut Thaweewarodomkul. [...]

24 09 2010
Another hidden lèse majesté arrest for computer crimes: Tanyawut Taweewarodomkul-PPT « FACT – Freedom Against Censorship Thailand

[...] name is Tanyawut Taweewarodomkul or “Kenny” [Red Eagle]. I’ve been charged with the Computer Crimes law and lese majeste. I [...]

7 02 2011
Chiranuch’s trial continues | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] too is the trial of Thanthawut Thaweewarodomkul, which PPT has also been updating. We recommend the report on his trial at Prachatai. How ironic is [...]

8 02 2011
FACT on Chiranuch Trial, Day 2 | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] NorPhorChorUSA webmaster Tantawut Taweewarodomkul, nicknamed Kenny, is also facing lèse majesté charges under Thailand’s Computer Crimes Act as [...]

22 02 2011
The missing headline: Lese majeste | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] days: Chiranuch Premchaiporn‘s court case, Surachai Sae Dan‘s most recent arrest, Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul‘s court case, and the threat to track down lese majeste internationally. To this incomplete [...]

15 03 2011
Thanthawut Taweewarodomkul gets 13 years

[...] Thanthawut Taweewarodomkul (details on his case are here) learned his unlucky fate: he was sentenced to 13 years for transgressing Thailand’s [...]

8 04 2011
Surachai denied bail | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] the same time, the Court decided “to forward the temporary release request of Thanthawut Thaweewarodomkul, webmaster of http://www.norporchorusa.com, to the Appeals Court for its [...]

18 12 2011
Jahrzehntelange Haft: In Thailand verstößt Amnesty International gegen die eigenen Grundsätze « Der Gleichklang-Polit-Blog

[...] Ebenfalls zu 13 Jahren Haft verurteilt ist Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, weil er angeblich der Webmaster einer monarchiekritischen US-Internetseite gewesen ist (siehe hier). [...]

12 06 2012
12 06 2012
An important call for AI to help Thailand’s political prisoners « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] Spooner has published a letter from lese majeste convict Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul (also known as Num). The letter is addressed to Amnesty International and was delivered by former [...]

29 07 2012
Suspended sentence for some computer crimes but not for others | Asia News – Politics, Media, Education | Asian Correspondent

[...] been used for lese majeste related offences the accused has been given a jail sentence – see here, here, and here (the Uncle SMS case) – but the sentences were not suspended. This is not a [...]

4 08 2012
Nat Sattayapornpisut released in April « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

4 08 2012
Nat Sattayapornpisut released in April « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] who was in the same zone, Worawut Thanangkorn who was moved to the zone in early 2011, and then Thanthawut Thaweewarodomkul.  It was Thanthawut who told visitors about Nat and Wanchai.  As a result, from mid-2011 onward, [...]

6 08 2012
Mothers and lese majeste detainees « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

6 08 2012
Mothers and lese majeste detainees « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] petition to the Supreme Court for Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul (also known as Num) for dropping his appeal has been shelved for three months, meaning he was [...]

20 08 2012
Thailand: Suspended sentence for some computer crimes, but not for others | Phuket Daily News

[...] been used for lese majeste related offences the accused has been given a jail sentence – see here, here, and here (the Uncle SMS case) – but the sentences were not suspended. This is not a [...]

23 08 2012
Lese majeste prisoners « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

24 08 2012
Lese majeste prisoners « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, serving 13 years, is quoted: “Some of the wardens took me to a different part of the jail and ordered other prisoners to beat me…”. Like his fellow prisoners held on this political charge, as a political prisoner, he shouldn’t even be in a common prison. He shouldn’t even be in jail! [...]

15 10 2012
A letter about solidarity « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

15 10 2012
A letter about solidarity « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] majeste convict Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul has released a letter at Prachatai, edited by Tyrell Haberkorn. In it he writes of the solidarity [...]

16 11 2012
Updated: Difference II « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

16 11 2012
Updated: Difference II « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] HRW should be demanding the release of Darunee Charnchoensilpakul, Surachai Danwattananusorn, Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, Somyos Pruksakasemsuk and [...]

4 12 2012
Anti-112 allies « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

4 12 2012
Anti-112 allies « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] it mentions “single-dad, Tanthawut [Taweewarodomkul who] hopes that he will receive a Royal pardon that would allow him to get back to [...]

5 12 2012
Lese majeste not forgotten « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[...] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul [...]

5 12 2012
Lese majeste not forgotten « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[...] Rattanawong, Suchart Nakbangsai, Surachai Danwattananusorn, Suriyan Kokpuey, Suwicha Thakor, Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, Uthai (family name unknown), and Wanchai [...]

5 07 2013
released | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul (also known as Num) was arrested on 1 April 2010 for allegedly being involved with a video program called “Thailand’s Way Out” (“ทางออกประเทศไทย”) on the http://www.norporchorusa.com website. It was considered to constitute lese majeste. The program ran on red shirt-related television and the Abhisit Vejjajiva regime had him arrested, making Tanthawut a political prisoner. […]

5 07 2013
Released | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul (also known as Num) was arrested on 1 April 2010 for allegedly being involved with a video program called “Thailand’s Way Out” (“ทางออกประเทศไทย”) on the http://www.norporchorusa.com website. It was considered to constitute lese majeste. The program ran on red shirt-related television and the Abhisit Vejjajiva regime had him arrested, making Tanthawut a political prisoner. […]

25 07 2013
Da Torpedo to seek pardon | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] the day of this announcement, Darunee was visited by Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, who received a pardon on 5 July this year, seven months after he lodged his request for a […]

25 07 2013
Da Torpedo to seek pardon | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] the day of this announcement, Darunee was visited by Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, who received a pardon on 5 July this year, seven months after he lodged his request for a […]

16 09 2013
Visiting a lese majeste prisoner | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] who is imprisoned in Nakorn Ratchasima for lese majeste. The group was reportedly “led by Mr. Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, aka Noom Red Nont, who had been imprisoned for lese majeste and released earlier this year.” […]

16 09 2013
Visiting a lese majeste prisoner | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] who is imprisoned in Nakorn Ratchasima for lese majeste. The group was reportedly “led by Mr. Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, aka Noom Red Nont, who had been imprisoned for lese majeste and released earlier this year.” […]

7 10 2013
With a major update: Remembering the 6 October 1976 attack | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Danwattananusorn was only released from prison last Friday but attended. Also there was Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, released a couple of months ago. He praised the October Generation: “Without the courage and […]

7 10 2013
Remembering the 6 October 1976 attack | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] Danwattananusorn was only released from prison last Friday but attended. Also there was Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, released a couple of months ago. He praised the October Generation: “Without the courage and […]




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