Further updated: Case after case

4 02 2015

There are reports of yet another lese majeste case.

In a report at Khaosod, police claim to have “arrested a 25-year-old Thai musician who allegedly forged a statement that purported to be issued by … the King on Monday night.” According to Prachatai, Kris B., is the suspect apprehended, and is accused under Article 112 and computer crimes offenses “for distributing false information on the computer system.”

Kris B. is reportedly “an active member of the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), the main faction of the anti-establishment red shirts. He is a full-time musician and live in central Petchaboon Province. He is a core member of the UDD Petchaboon.”

Police did not explain how Kris was located and arrested. Earlier, they claimed the fake royal health/succession document came from overseas.

Kris has been detained by the military at “an army camp in Bangkok for interrogation.”

Update 1: The Bangkok Post reports that “Phetchabun core red-shirt leader Krit Bootdeejean is suspected of releasing online a fake royal document.” Police spokesman Pol Lt Gen Prawut Thawornsiri said the suspect is a 26 year-old deputy leader of the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship and has been detained  had been taken to the 11th Infantry Regiment of the King’s Own Bodyguard in Bangkok pending further investigation into whether he produced the document or simply posted it on Twitter.” It is added that police are preparing to charge him with lese majeste.”

Police chief and businessman Somyos Pumpanmuang, who is claimed to have “led the interrogation of Mr Krit,” claims that “the suspect confessed to receiving the document from a red-shirt associate and posted it online as he believed the announcement was new and wanted to share it with his online friends.” He is said to have “later removed the post after becoming suspicious about the document’s authenticity.” That sounds to us pretty much the same as the Manager/ASTV use of the document.

A team of military and police officers arrested Krit “and took him to Bangkok. The team seized the computer, a tablet computer, mobile phone and CDs containing red-shirt propaganda songs.”

Update 2: The information at the Bangkok Post was updated but now appears to be deleted (at least we can’t locate it again). It is clear that Krit disseminated the report, much the same as ASTV/Manager did. The police now state that he “was identified by police as ‘among the first people’ who shared the forged statement.” Yet he still faces lese majeste and computer crimes charges!

This point is taken up by “UDD chief adviser Tida Tawornseth … [who also] sought to distance the group from the suspect, saying Mr Krit is a sympathiser, not a leading red shirt.” She  called on “police to take action against the news website that disseminated the statement without verifying its authenticity, saying the site is partly responsible for how quickly the statement spread.” She referred to ASTV/Manager.

Meanwhile, Jatuporn Prompan said “he suspects red shirts are being set up.” He pointed out that: “This is not unusual. Earlier the government claimed the statement originated from overseas, but it is now claiming it is from Phetchabun. It is clear the red-shirt group is being targeted…”.

In addition, “the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) minister has ordered an investigation into an ICT officer who allegedly shared the forged statement about the King’s health on social media.”