Royal Thai Police
Following revelations by WikiLeaks that the Thai authorities allegedly purchased a surveillance programme from an Italian firm, further leaked documents show that staff from the IT firm went to Thailand’s Deep South to deliver certain products.
The Thai police said on Friday that they have closed about 50 per cent of more than 400 lèse majesté cases filed with them in the past six months. Also, more than 25,000 websites were closed because of lèse majesté. The police reported their six-month results at a press conference at the Royal Thai Police Headquarters on Friday. During the press conference, attended by about 100 civil servants, entrepreneurs, and medical volunteers, the police said they have closed 239 of 443 lèse majesté cases in the past six months.
The Thai police ordered a check into a lèse majesté case against a policewoman accused of defaming the monarchy on Facebook, after pressure from ultra-royalists who launched a campaign to bully the policewoman, Thai media reported.
The Thai police have been notorious for their use of torture to force confessions and the arrest of scapegoats. The two Myanmar suspects accused of killing two British backpackers on Thailand’s Koh Tao Island are good examples. In the restive Deep South, lawyers say that security officers regularly torture insurgent suspects to get confessions since the Thai police do not have enough evidence to issue arrest warrants by normal means. The Thai police are now aiming to optimize investigations by pushing for a law which will allow police from all divisions to intercept suspects’ communications. However, experts say the bill could ironically end up aggravating police abuses.
The cabinet gave the green light to the Royal Thai Police proposal to provide the Special Branch Police with the authority to carry out searches, arrests, and detention of suspects. Meanwhile, the police aim to amend the Criminal Procedure Code to allow all police units to be able to intercept private communications for better crime control.
A court on Saturday approved an arrest warrant for two high ranking police officers accused of defaming the King, asking for bribes, money laundering and misconduct. On the same warrant, three other police officers and three civilians were named.