Updated: Surachai sentenced (again)

28 05 2012

The Bangkok Post reports the unsurprising news that Red Siam Group leader Surachai Danwattananusorn has been sentenced to yet another jail term for lese majeste.

The Criminal Court sentenced Surachai to 5 years, reduced to 2.5 years on his guilty plea. This was apparently for his fifth lese majeste charge, dating to 15 December 2008.

Surachai (an AP photo)

Surachai testified that he had “submitted a request to withdraw his earlier not guilty plea. He admitted he is the same person charged in four other lese majeste cases.” He said he “wanted the court to quickly hand down a verdict … because he wished to seek a royal pardon.” In other words, his guilty plea is little more than a part of a strategy.

This jail term “will be added to the jail sentences earlier handed down on him in four other lese majeste cases.”

We make that a total of 10 12.5 years in jail [PPT: our addition of all of his sentences was incorrect, and 12 years and 6 months is the correct total. Of course, the real sentence was a staggering 25 years!]. Surachai is shortly to undergo a prostrate operation.

Essentially, the courts are locking up a 72 year old and sick man for 10 12.5 years in the name of protecting the monarchy.


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