Back in January, referring to a Prachatai story, we felt that the “fact” that public prosecutors had dropped defamation charges against Naritsarawan Keawnopparat suggested that someone in the regime was displaying something approaching good commonsense.
Naritsarawan had campaigned for justice over the torture of her uncle who was tortured and killed by the military, while he was enlisted as a conscript.
According to an Army investigation, in 2011, her uncle, Wichian Puaksom, was tortured by other soldiers and officers. They accused of running away from military training. The Army report said Wichian was stripped down to his underwear and dragged him over a rough cement surface before being repeatedly kicked and beaten for several hours. The tormentors then applied salt to his wounds to increase his pain, wrapped him in a white sheet, tying his hands together as for a corpse and read funeral rites, before engaging in further beatings. He later died.
Police arrested Naritsarawan on 26 July 2016 for publishing details on the internet about the death of her late uncle. Major Phuri Phueksophon of the 4th Army Region, the unit responsible for the torture of her uncle — accused Naritsarawan of violating the Computer Crime Act and defaming him by exposing the torture.
The prosecution is now back on as police have overridden the prosecutor’s decision.
Naritsarawan has received a letter after Pol Maj Gen Ronnasin Phusara, Interim Commander of the Southern Border Provinces Police Operation Center, stating “that she should be charged under the Computer Crime Act and Criminal Defamation for for publishing details on the internet about the death of her late uncle.”
It seems there’s no justice.