That’s the message from two of the websites most read by those rather hipper than us at PPT. The reports are prompted by the uncivilized application lese majeste law by secret military courts handing out sentences on behalf of the royal family by the thuggish military dictatorship.
A man in Bangkok was just sentenced to 30 years in prison for a series of Facebook posts he made criticizing Thai royalty, and a woman in Chiang Mai — who is the mom of two young girls — was sentenced to 28 years for doing the same. Both sentences were originally set at double those lengths, but were cut in half after the “culprits” plead guilty to writing several status updates criticizing Thailand’s king.
A Military Court chief said the man’s trial was kept private because “What he wrote was beyond rude. Even the prosecutor did not want to read them out loud.”
After 2010, which [was] the last major swell in lèse-majesté charges [under the Abhisit Vejjajiva military-backed and royalist regime], the numbers dropped substantially. “Just before the coup [under an elected government], there were just five people in prison under lèse-majesté and only two ongoing prosecutions….
Those numbers have since risen substantially [under the military dictatorship]…. The total number of people who have been charged under lèse-majesté is now at 51, since the coup…. Four were released, three have been bailed out, and one case was suspended…. The rest … have their cases ongoing, or are already serving their prison terms.
PPT is not convinced by the 51 number. We think it is almost double that number, but the 51 comes from iLaw, and they follow it pretty closely.