Royal motorcade lese majeste

19 10 2022

Social media reported a scuffle at the revamped Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre (QSNCC) when King Vajiralongkorn and Queen Suthida attended for the opening ceremony.

Prachatai has now reported on this incident.

It says Atirut (last name withheld), a 25-year-old programmer, was arrested on Saturday 15 October 2022 and “charged with royal defamation [they mean lese majeste] for refusing to sit down and shouting as King Vajiralongkorn’s royal motorcade went past.”

A witness saw the arrest, at around 18.15, with some 10 officers detaining the man, “putting him in a chokehold and carrying him inside the QSNCC by his arms and legs. An officer also put a hand over the man’s mouth.”

The witness “was told that the man had been taken to Lumpini Police Station, but officers at the station denied that anyone had been sent there when activists went looking for the man.”

Thai Lawyers for Human Rights later said Atirut “was being detained at Lumpini Police Station. According to the arrest record, he was arrested and charged because he refused to sit down and shouted ‘Going anywhere is a burden’ as the royal motorcade went past.”

TLHR also said that he “received minor injuries, including scratches on his left ankle and both elbows and a torn nail on his right hand. He was also reported to have been handcuffed after being carried inside the QSNCC.”

Atirut “was taken to court this morning (17 October) for a temporary detention request,” with the South Bangkok Criminal Court granting the police request to temporarily detain Atirut for 12 days. However, after “his lawyer filed a bail request, he was granted bail with a 200,000-baht security and released.”



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