Dogged by lese majeste

1 03 2016

Lawyer Anon Nampa is trying to save the military dictatorship from even more ridicule, domestically and internationally.

According to a report at Prachatai, on Monday, Anon submitted a letter to the military Judge Advocate General’s Office,pointing out that the lese majeste charge being considered against his client Thanakorn Siripaiboon is ludicrous, lacking in legal merit even under the draconian Article 112 and likely to make Thailand even more of a legal pariah than it already is.

Thanakorn, a factory worker, stands accused of lese majeste for allegedly “mocking” the now dead mongrel dog that belonged to the king. The case is pushed by “military prosecutors” who seem willfully to ignore what Article 112 actually says.

Anon quite rightly points out that the lese majeste law simply “does not cover the King’s dog.”

Thanakorn is accused under Article 112 of “clicking ‘like’ and posting or sharing a message mocking Thong Daeng,” the king’s dog. He is also accused of clicking ‘like’ on a “doctored image of the King and sharing it with hundreds of others online.”

Thanakorn is also accused of sedition “for posting an infographic on the Rajabhakti Park [military] corruption scandal on Facebook.”

Anon accuses the plaintiff – military prosecutors – of “intentionally used Article 112 as a political tool to deal with political dissidents,” and adds that this use of “disproportionate offences” is itself unlawful.

We doubt the politically motivated prosecutors, acting on the orders of the military junta, will suddenly suffer an attack of good sense and legal probity.

Sadly, Thanakorn remains in custody, almost four months after his arrest, repeatedly denied bail requests.


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