Junta summons activists-lèse majesté suspects in exile

The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) at around 10.30 p.m. on Wednesday summoned 21 more people including activists in exile and facing lèse majesté charges, such as Ji Ungpakorn, Junya Yimprasert, Jakrapob Penkair and Chatwadee Amornrapat who was recently sued by her parents for offending the monarchy. 
 
Jakrapob Penkair, former Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office under the premiership of Samak Sundaravej and a founding member of the red shirt UDD, was sued for his alleged offensive speech at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand in 2008. He has lived in exile since 2009. 
 
Joe Gordon, a naturalised American citizen who was in 2011 given 2.5-year sentence for posting a translation of “The King Never Smiles” on his blog, was also summoned.   
 
Thai-British Ji, a former political science lecturer at Chulalonkorn University and a red shirt faction leader, and Chatwadee now reside in the UK, while Jakrapob now lives in Cambodia. 
 
Junya, a labour activist and campaigner, left the country in 2010 and recently received asylum status from Finland. Police issued an arrest warrant for Junya in 2013 due to the content in one of her books. 
 
The list also includes Choopong Teethuan, who was issued with an arrest warrant in 2011 due to the alleged defamatory content on his online radio show. His whereabouts are unknown. 
 
They were ordered to report themselves at the Thai Army Club in Theves, Bangkok by June 9th, 12 p.m. 
 
The Article 112 of Thailand’s Criminal Code, or the lèse majesté law, stipulates that "Whoever defames, insults or threatens the King, Queen, Heir-apparent or Regent, shall be punished with imprisonment of three to fifteen years." Critics of the law say it is abused as a political tool and severely limits freedom of expression.