Submitted on Fri, 22 Aug 2014 - 03:40 PM
A man has been arrested and charged with lèse majesté under Article 112 for sending an email with a link to content deemed to defame the monarchy to the now-defunct Stop Lèse Majesté blog. This is the third case involving the blog, according to iLaw.
Tanet (last name withheld due to privacy concerns) was accused of sending an email to Emilio Esteban, whom the police identified as an Englishman residing in Spain. Esteban ran the Stop Lèse Majesté blog.
The police state on the custody petition that the police sought a court order to hack into Esteban’s email in 2010 and found an email from the suspect.
In the email, the suspect allegedly gave Esteban a link to an article deemed lèse majesté with a message “Can you post this web on your site for Thais to read? They need to read it. Thanks load.”
However, the police did not follow up the case against Tanet until 2 July 2014 when 10 military officers and plainclothes policemen raided his house and arrested him under the order of the junta's National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO). During the pre-charge detention at a military camp, Tanet admitted sending the email. On the sixth day of his detention, a court arrest warrant was issued. On the seventh day, the last day that martial law allows for detention without charge, the military transferred Tanet into police custody at the Technology Crime Suppression Division.
The police charged him under Articles 112 (for defaming the King), and 116 (for instigating unrest) of the Criminal Code and Article 14 (3) of the Computer Crime Act (for sending content deemed a threat to national security on a computer system).
Tanet, 45, pleaded guilty to all charges to police investigators. He is now detained at the Bangkok Remand Prison. Tanet is HIV positive and was treated at a hospital in central Phetchabun Province.
Earlier Nat S. and Suwicha T. were found guilty of lèse majesté and under the Computer Crime Act on charges involving Estaban in 2009.
Suwicha was sentenced to 20 years in prison for allegedly joining Estaban in defaming the monarchy. The sentence was halved because he pleaded guilty. He served about a year in jail before receiving a royal pardon in 2010.
Nat was sentenced to nine years in jail for sending an email to Estaban with content deemed lèse majesté. The police found Nat’s email after hacking into Estaban’s email account. However, the sentence was reduced by half since Nat pleaded guilty. Nat was granted an early release after serving a jail term of about three years in 2008.
The Stop Lèse Majesté blog on BlogSpot no longer exists. Apart from advocating abolition of the law, the blog shared news of lèse majesté prisoners and content defaming the Thai monarchy.