Updated: Lawfare increasing

16 12 2020

Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha and his regime are piling on the charges against those they consider the leaders of opposition rallies. It looks like lawfare.

Wikipedia has useful definitions:

  • The misuse of legal systems and principles against an enemy, such as by damaging or delegitimizing them, wasting their time and money …, or winning a public relations victory.
  • A tactic used by repressive regimes to label and discourage civil society or individuals from claiming their legal rights via national or international legal systems. This is especially common in situations when individuals and civil society use non-violent methods to highlight or oppose discrimination, corruption, lack of democracy, limiting freedom of speech, violations of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.

That’s pretty much what’s going on, as case after case piles up. In recent reports, the Bangkok Post refers to Arnon Nampa being hit with another lese majeste case, reporting “to Bang Pho police on Monday to acknowledge another lese majeste charge under Section 112 of the Criminal Code, this time in connection the rally in front of parliament, near the Kiak Kai intersection, on Nov 17.”

It is uplifting that Arnon is “not dispirited by the charge.” He says there are four others and he expects more.

Arnon stated that “[a]ll protest leaders were prepared to enter the legal process…”. And, he expects a long struggle against the regime.

Update: As we said, cases are mounting by the day. Two new charges we have seen are:

  • Parit “Penguin” Chiwarak reported to Samranrat police on Wednesday to acknowledge a police charge of causing damage to public property during a rally at the Democracy Monument on Oct 14.
  • Celebrity actress Inthira “Sai” Charoenpura, who organized donations for the pro-democracy rallies said Wednesday she was charged with royal defamation [112], a harsh law that could land her in prison for 15 years.

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