Further updated: Red shirt leader Yoswaris Chuklom sentenced on lese majeste

17 01 2013
Jeng Dokchik

Jeng

Bloomberg reports that Yoswaris Chuklom, currently an adviser to the government, a comedian and red shirt leader who was prominent in the 2010 protests, has been sentenced to two years in prison on a lese majeste charge based on comments made in a speech during a red-shirt rally at the Phan Fa stage on 29 March 2010.

Also known as , he “received the sentence for comments made in a speech to protesters that implied King Bhumibol Adulyadej influenced [then Prime Minister] Abhisit [Vejjajiva]’s decision not to dissolve the parliament, according to a court statement. The court said it freed him on bail while he appeals the sentence because he showed no intention to flee.”

The court stated: “His statement falsely accused the king of political interference and opposing the defendant and his group…. His statement that his speech didn’t mean he was referring to the king is groundless.”

Yes, that’s right, the court concluded that there was an implied “threat to the monarchy” by associated a political decision with the king, who all politicians are meant to listen to and heed his advice, no matter how bland or loopy, in royalist Thailand.

Yoswaris is alleged to have “told Red Shirt protesters that Abhisit refused to dissolve parliament in 2010 on the orders of an unidentified person with more power than both him and Privy Council President Prem Tinsulanonda, the king’s top adviser, according to the court. The [court concluded that the] speech apparently made people believe that Yossawaris was referring to the king…”.

This startling, almost unbelievable, case is one of a raft of lese majeste cases brought against red shirt leaders. Politicized courts continue to “punish” those seen to attack the royalist state where it now seems that even an “implied” statement about a body the court might conclude is the king, queen or heir apparent is sufficient to lock an opponent up. Jeng is punished for being an outspoken critic of the royalist state.

Update: Other reports on the sentencing are at the Bangkok Post and The Telegraph.


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17 01 2013
Ludicrous upper class twits « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] Party who used lese majeste and computer crimes laws to silence political opponents. In fact, one of the lese majeste charges from their police state was sentenced in the past few hours for impl…! Others remain in jail on this most draconian of charges. It is they who were put in place by the […]

17 01 2013
Ludicrous upper class twits « Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] Party who used lese majeste and computer crimes laws to silence political opponents. In fact, one of the lese majeste charges from their police state was sentenced in the past few hours for impl…! Others remain in jail on this most draconian of charges. It is they who were put in place by the […]