The authorities have arrested two women for possessing pro-republic t-shirts. One of them has already been released while the other is detained incommunicado. On 6 September 2018, Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR) reported that Bangkok authorities that morning arrested Surangkhanang (pseudonym) and her daughter, 11. According to Surangkhanang’s niece, over 10 officials, including four soldiers, about 5 men in black and female officials, emerged from a grey van and arrested the two after they came back from the market.
Despite an objection from the prosecutor, a key witness of the 2010 massacre charged with royal defamation has been released on bail with 400,000 baht as surety. On 4 July 2018, Winyat Chatmontree, a lawyer from United Lawyers for Rights & Liberty, posted on Facebook that the Bangkok Military Court released Nutthida Meewangpla on bail after serving three years and five months for royal defamation and criminal association. She had to pay 400,000 baht as surety.
Nonthaburi authorities have arrested 168 refugees and asylum seekers from Vietnam and Cambodia, even though 154 of them are recognised by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). On 28 August 2018, district officials, the military, local police and Immigration Police raided a house in Bang Yai District in Nonthaburi to arrest 130 Vietnamese and 38 Cambodians. The raid took place at dawn after the authorities received a report that the 168 were connected to human trafficking networks. 60 of those arrested are children.
On 26 August 2018, Prawet Prapanukul, 57, was released from Bangkok Remand Prison after serving 16 months. The human rights lawyer was arrested on 29 April 2017 for violating Article 112 of the Penal Code, the royal defamation law. Prawet faced up to 50 years in prison for posting messages on Facebook that landed him with 10 lèse majesté charges and three sedition charges. The Court of First Instance on 27 June 2018 dismissed his royal defamation charges but sentenced him to 15 months in prison for sedition, plus one extra month for refusing to be fingerprinted.
Pattani authorities have raided a classroom to arrest two Myanmar volunteer teachers and one tourist who was merely observing the class. Authorities said teaching as a volunteer without a work permit constitutes an offence, since receiving a meal is a form of reward.
A red shirt, who nearly lost his arm during a 2009 attack by the military, has pleaded for leniency after the court confiscated his land and bank account to repay the Royal Thai Army. On 10 August 2018, Sawai Thong-om and his lawyer submitted a petition to Government House asking for exemption from court and attorney’s fees of 212,114 baht in the lawsuit Sawai brought against the Royal Thai Army.
On 20 July 2018, the Bangkok Military Court called for witness testimony of the Article 112 case, the royal defamation case, against “Waen” Nattatida Meewangpla, a crucial witness in the 6-dead massacre at Pathum temple in 2010. The testimony of two witnesses, Maj Gen Wicharn Jodtaeng and Police Major General Surasak Khunnarong, started at 8.30 am. When Waen was brought to the Bangkok Military Court, she was taken into the building immediately, and the Court ordered this case to be a closed trial.
A public prosecutor has dismissed charges against 14 villagers in Phayao who were prosecuted for violating the NCPO’s ban on public protests. Before the case was dropped, the villagers faced repeated intimidation by the local authorities. Thai Lawyers for Human Rights reported on 8 June that in late May a public prosecutor in Phayao Province decided not to indict 14 supporters of the civil rights march We Walk. The police have asked them to sign a document to this effect at Phu Sang Police Station.
The Thai and Migrant Fishers Union Group (TMFG) is disputing claims by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) that they are a government- and industry-run organization. The TMFG also took issue with a letter sent by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to the Thai government, and made apparently mistaken claims that the ILO demanded the TMFG be suspended. On March 18 2018 the Labour Rights Promotion Network (LPN) launched the TMFG in coordination with the Labour Ministry, the National Fisheries As
The Chiang Mai court has concluded that the young Lahu activist Chaiyaphum Pasae was killed by army bullets but would not say whether or not he attempted to fight back against the authorities, despite his family’s request. On 6 June 2018, the Chiang Mai Provincial Court ruled on the extrajudicial killing case of Chaiyaphum Pasae, a young ethnic Lahu activist who was shot dead by a soldier on 17 March 2017.