Remembering Ampol

11 05 2013

The 10th of May was the anniversary of the death in custody of lese majeste convict Ampol Tangnopakul. PPT has the whole sorry tale of royalist vindictiveness against an old man they believed had insulted the queen here.

As many readers will know, Ampol  should never have been in jail and should certainly not have died there.Uncle_SMS

At Khao Sod it is reported that many activists marked Ampol’s sad passing and observes that his wife, Rosmalin, “called for immediate release of other political prisoners.” She specifically mentioned those held for lese majeste.

Ms. Rosmalin added that she is now “quite numb to the deep pain she feels because she needs to act as a model for the grandchildren so that they can see that she is still strong.”

Ampol’s  lawyer restated that “there is no evidence of Mr. Ampon ever sent the offensive SMS.”

Academic Somsak Jeamteerasakul spoke of how case strongly moved him, stating: “any person with common sense can clearly see that Ah Kong was an innocent victim.” He added that the harsh treatment he received – no bail, 20 year sentence – as absurd: “Anyone with the slightest bit of humanity would not have come to this judgment since there was no evidence of Ah Kong’s guilt at all…”.

He also criticized “self-proclaimed civil rights groups” that lacked any shred of “bravery” in failing to “protest the ruling, even though they all believed Ah Kong was not guilty.”

Somsak says his own lese majeste case has “reached the proscecutor.”

It is a sad anniversary, yet Ampol’s case serves as a reminder of the feudal nature of the lese majeste law.



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