Southern farmers face legal intimidation by private companies

Surat Thani farmers have called for protection from to various government agencies after two companies initiated lawsuits against them and destroyed their corps. 
 
On 12 September 2017, 13 farmers from Southern Peasants Federation of Thailand (SPFT) filed a petition to Lawyers Council of Thailand (LCT), Royal Thai Police (RTP), and National Human Right Commission (NHRC) to help them in the lawsuit they are facing.
 
The prosecution against the farmers emerge from a land dispute. 15 SPFT members from Nam Daeng Phatthana Community, Surat Thani Province, have been accused of trespassing and destroying property of Equatorial Communication Limited and a mining company Sakol Sappayakorn Limited. The companies also accused them for criminal association.  
 
However, the SPFT argued that the companies have tried to make a claim over their farmlands. They were also threatened by the companies and local influencers who raid into their farmlands and cut down their corps, creating huge loss to their incomes.
 
SPFT, therefore, asked the LCT to appoint their lawyer in the steering committee of the LCT. They asked the RTP to investigate local police officers for neglecting their duty since the farmers have file seven reports to the police but the authorities have shown no effort to protect them.
 
Lastly, They urged the NHRC to provide more protection for local land right activist and investigation the human right violations in their community.
 
On 12 September, SPFT also filed a petition to the Department of Special Investigation and the Department of Lands to investigate the land title deeds of the companies. 
 
 
SPFT farmers file a petition to the Lawyers Council of Thailand