On 5 March, Pranee Danwatthananusorn told Prachatai that her husband Surachai was going to petition the government to seek a royal pardon for all political prisoners including those jailed for lèse majesté offences.
Surachai would write a letter to ask Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to order Minister of Justice Pol Gen Pracha Phromnok to seek the royal pardon, and the letter would be signed by eight lèse majesté convicts and defendants including himself, Somyot Prueksakasemsuk, Joe Gordon, CD seller Sathian Rattanawong, Singaporean Wanchai Sae Tan, Nat Sattayapornpisut, Suchart Nakbangsai, and Daranee Charnchoengsilpakul.
According to Sections 259 – 261 of the Criminal Procedure Code, those whose court cases have been finished can seek a royal pardon through the Minister of Justice, or the Minister or Cabinet can, on their own initiative, propose to HM the King a royal pardon to convicts.
Surachai was given a sentence of 7.5 years’ imprisonment in late February, but he still faces two more cases, one of them pending trial in June this year. Somyot’s case is in the hearings process, and he has not yet pleaded guilty. Daranee has reportedly decided to appeal her case.