Lese majeste mistreatment

The Bangkok Post reports that the Supreme Court has upheld the Appeals Court’s refusal of bail for anti-junta activist and lese majeste suspect Jatuphat Boonpattaraksa or Pai Daodin.

We must emphasize that Jatuphat’s “crime” is sharing, on Facebook, a BBC Thai story on the checkered past of the king following his accession. Thousands of others also shared this story but, as far as we know, the anti-junta activist is the only one charged.

Arrested on 3 December 2016, Jatuphat was initially granted bail by the Khon Kaen provincial court but this was revoked on 22 December for social media posts that police and court alleged “could be construed as an attempt to challenge state power and show disrespect for the rule of law.”

As we have said previously, there is no rule of law in Thailand, just the rule of dictators.

His lawyers state that “a new bail request would be filed with the provincial court, probably with a larger surety.”

Meanwhile, Prachatai has had two recent reports on Jatuphat’s case, alleging mistreatment. The first report is somewhat unclear, but suggests that the court has made decisions on his case without him being present.

The second report states that his “fourth custody hearing” was “held in secret and only Jatuphat’s lawyers and parents were allowed to enter the courtroom.” Equally disturbing is the report that Jatuphat has been subjected to repeated “rectal searches,” allegedly a “standard” procedure to prevent the transport of drugs. Jatuphat “protests that he should not be subjected to this treatment since he is a political suspect, not a drug suspect, staff still persist.”

Lese majeste suspects are repeatedly treated in ways that can amount to a form of torment and torture.

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