Submitted on Thu, 2014-11-13 09:46
The military court on Wednesday refused to grant bail for Opas C., a 67-year-old man charged with lèse majesté for writing graffiti defaming the revered Thai monarchy in restrooms of a shopping mall, despite the suspect’s poor health.
The court ruled not to grant a 2.5 million baht bail request, saying that it has ruled not to grant bail in previous bail requests and there was no reason to reverse the ruling. On 20 October, the court had rejected a similar request, citing the severity of the allegation, since it is concerned national security, and the flight risk.
Arriving at the military court with a fever and cold, Opas has been suffering from hypertension and visited the hospital regularly before being detained. The Bangkok Remand Prison recently moved him from Zone 1 or the Entry Zone to Zone 5, which is a lot more crowded and where conditions are much worse.
He has been deprived of his freedom for 30 days.
Opas C. is taken to the military court
Earlier on the same day, the court ruled to extend the custody of Opas for the third time at the request of the Crime Suppression Division, who claim that they need to interrogate four more witnesses and have not finished inspecting the suspect’s fingerprints.
Opas was captured by the security guards of the Seacon Square Shopping Mall on 15 October after he allegedly wrote messages on the walls of three men’s restrooms in the mall and fined him 2,000 baht. Later in the evening the mall contacted the military to detain him.
On 17 October, the military brought Opas to the Crime Suppression Division (CSD) office and filed charges under Article 112 against him. At the press briefing on the same day, he admitted that he wrote the graffiti, which mainly criticized the junta.
The messages mainly criticized the junta leader Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha and the Democrat government which ruled the country from 2011 to 2011. They condemned the two governments for abusing Article 112.
One of the messages reads: “The government of clowns that robbed the nation, led by f*** Prayuth. They have issued ridiculous policies of amateur comedians. Their main job is to use the monarchy (uncle [censored by Prachatai*]). Their main weapon is Article 112. I’m sick of seeing your face [Prayuth] every day. It tells me that you [Prayuth] are near the end because of the looming internal conflict.”