Palace and lese majeste

7 06 2016

In a short report at Prachatai, the desperate efforts of “the parents of two Facebook users initially arrested for mocking the junta leader and later charged with lѐse majesté” are mentioned.

Most interesting in this report is that the parents have “travelled to the Grand Palace in Bangkok to pay respect to the Thai Monarchy [capitals!] and submit a bail request for their children to the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary…”.

Harit and Natthika “have firmly maintained that they are innocent.”

They have repeatedly been refused bail by the military court, as is the norm for lese majeste “suspects.” Their lawyer states that “if his clients are granted bail, they will continue to fight the case through the judicial system.” (This is exactly why bail is rarely given – the royalist authorities do not want cases to be contested.)

As mentioned going to the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary seems unusual. Indeed, we can’t think of such a move previously. We recall that pleas for a pardon have gone to the Office, but this action to “submit a bail request,” is quite new.

We think this acknowledges the reality of the palace’s involvement in lese majeste cases. We have previously noted this involvement by the political interventionists at the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary, here and here, and by the Privy Council, here.



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