Further updated: Another cruel lese majeste “conviction”

4 01 2018

Under the military dictatorship lese majeste cases have become increasing bizarre and cruel. Students, journalists, academics, workers, red shirts and many more have been charged and sentenced. In recent months this purge has included juveniles and the aged.

Khaosod reports that Yala’s provincial court “sentenced a blind woman to one and a half years in prison for posting content which it found violated royal defamation laws.” On 4 January 2018, Nurhayati Masoh (rendered as Murhyatee in some reports), 23, an unemployed Thai-Malay Muslim from Yala, was convicted after “agreeing” to plead guilty after being held in prison since November 2016.* She received three years, halved for the guilty plea.

In October 2016 using “a voice-assisted application which reads text out loud to post material from Ji Ungpakorn’s blog.

According to the report, “The court said they are sympathetic to her [because she’s blind] but said the law is the law…”.

Update 1: A Reuters report states that she’s been jailed since November 2017, when the case was filed against her. This information is confused in various reports. The event giving rise to the post on her Facebook page appears to have been the death of the king in October 2016.

A Prachatai report states that the court refused to suspend her sentence because of her impairment, pointing to the “severity of the charge.”

Update 2: Soon after conviction, the Muslim Attorney Center in Yala said it was planning to appeal the verdict on behalf of the convicted woman’s family. The foundation hoped to have the jail time suspended and also planned to seek a royal pardon.


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