Submitted on Sat, 2016-11-26 02:59
A military court has given an 8 months suspended jail term to a suspect who refused to comply with a junta order. He also faces a lèse majesté charge
On 25 November 2016, Bangkok Military Court found Sirapop (surname withheld for privacy concerns) guilty of breaching a junta order. The court sentenced him to 1 year in jail and an 18,000 baht fine. However, since the defendant cooperated with the investigation process and had never committed a serious crime before, the court reduced the sentence by one-third to 8 months and 12,000 baht and suspended the jail term for two years, reported iLaw.
Sirapop is a poet and anti-junta activist. After the junta took power in 2014, he was summoned together with other political dissidents but refused to report, saying he does not accept the junta’s authority.
He was arrested on 25 June 2014 in northeastern Kalasin Province, while attempting to flee to a neighbouring country, and indicted for violating National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) Order No. 44/2014 and NCPO Announcements Nos. 37/2014 and 41/2014 for not reporting to the military.
Apart from breaching the junta’s orders, Sirapop was also accused of lèse majesté. After his arrest, he was accused of posting lèse majesté messages on the Internet.
He has been detained in Bangkok Remand Prison. The military court has repeatedly denied bail, citing flight risk and the severity of the charges.
He has now been given sentences of 2 years and six months in total and still fighting the lèse majesté case.