Thailand: Activist jailed for two years for insulting Queen Suthida

It’s a crime in Thailand to defame or insult the King, queen, inheritor or regent, with punishments of as much as 15 years in jail underneath what are among the many world’s strictest “lese majeste” legal guidelines.

Jatuporn “New” Saeoueng, 25, was discovered responsible of deliberately mocking the monarchy by her actions throughout a Bangkok road protest in 2020, based on her lawyer Krisadang Nutcharat.

She is one in every of not less than 210 activists who’ve been charged with royal insult within the final two years associated to protests calling for reform of the highly effective monarchy, based on authorized help group Thai Legal professionals for Human Rights, which tracks such instances utilizing police and court docket information. Reuters was not in a position to independently verify these information.

The palace, which has repeatedly declined to touch upon the protests, couldn’t be reached for touch upon Monday. Ruling monarch King Maha Vajiralongkorn in November 2020 stated when requested by Britain’s Channel 4 Information concerning the protesters: “We love all of them the identical.”

Jaturporn in October 2020 walked a crimson carpet at a protest carrying a conventional pink silk costume shaded underneath an umbrella held by an attendant, whereas protesters sat on the bottom in a way that Thai conventional tradition calls for within the presence of royalty.

Many interpreted her protest show as portraying the queen, whom three-times divorced King Vajiralongkorn married days earlier than his official 2019 coronation.

“Jatuporn has denied the fees all alongside and stated she places on conventional Thai costume usually,” Krisadang stated.

“However the court docket sees it as mockery and defamatory in direction of the monarchy,” he stated, including that his shopper, who’s transgender, would enchantment the ruling. She was sentenced to serve in a girls’s jail.

The court docket couldn’t be reached for affirmation of the sentence. Thailand’s courts usually don’t publicize authorized proceedings.

For many years, conventional tradition in Thailand has revered the King. In 2020, political protests in opposition to navy meddling in authorities morphed into criticism of King Vajiralongkorn, 70, who took the throne after the 2016 dying of his extensively revered father, who had reigned for 70 years.

The protesters contended that the navy had justified repeated seizures of energy — together with military coups in 2006 and 2014 — as essential to defend the monarchy. The federal government and navy have denied that accusation.

The protesters even have criticized new powers King Vajiralongkorn assumed after he took the throne, together with bulletins within the official Royal Gazette giving him direct management of the huge wealth of the crown and not less than two military models. The palace has not responded to these criticisms.

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