Parents of lѐse majesté suspects ask Royal Secretariat to allow bail

Despite faint hopes, the parents of two Facebook users initially arrested for mocking the junta leader and later charged with lѐse majesté have requested the Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary to allow bail for their children.

Krit Mahaton, father of Harit Mahaton, and Aporn Worathaiwich, mother of Natthika Worathaiwich, at 9 am on 3 June 2016 travelled to the Grand Palace in Bangkok to pay respect to the Thai Monarchy and submit a bail request for their children to the Office of His Majesty's Principal Private Secretary (HMPPS).   

Harit and Natthika are suspects under Article 112 of the Criminal Code, the lѐse majesté law.

The two are among the eight abducted junta critics who have been charged with sedition for allegedly being involved in Facebook pages that mock Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha, the junta leader and Prime Minister, including a Facebook page called ‘We Love Gen Prayut’.

Unlike the other six who were granted bail, however, they are also accused of lѐse majesté for sending messages deemed to have defamed the Thai Monarchy in a private Facebook chat.

According to Winyat Chatmontree, lawyer from Free Thai Legal Aid (FTLA) representing the two suspects, if his clients are granted bail, they will continue to fight the case through the judicial system.

He said that the Military Court repeatedly denied 500,000 baht bail requests for the two lѐse majesté suspects, adding that both Harit and Natthika have firmly maintained that they are innocent.

Aporn Worathaiwich (second from the left) and Krit Mahaton (far right) holding bail requests for their children in front of the Grand Palace in Bangkok on 3 June 2016 (Photo from Banrasdr’s Facebook)