Prominent Thai Activist Sentenced to 4 Years in Prison Due to Royal Defamation

PHOTO: Thaipost

National —

A pro-democracy activist and lawyer, Arnon Nampa, has been sentenced to 4 years in prison following his remarks about the Thai monarchy in an October 2020 protest.

Yesterday, September 26th, the Criminal Court on Ratchadaphisek Road held a hearing for a case where Arnon was accused of defaming the royal institution during a protest against the Prayut Chan-o-cha government on October 14th, 2022 in Bangkok.

Arnon, 39, who is also a lawyer from Thai Lawyers for Human Rights, also faced charges regarding the violation of the Emergency Decree which banned public gatherings during the coronavirus pandemic.

During the protest, Arnon made three demands to the Prayut government: 1. Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha must resign. 2. Draft a new constitution. 3. Reform the monarchy.

According to a report from the Thai Lawyers for Human Rights, the court has sentenced Arnon to 4 years in prison without parole and fined him 20,000 baht for violating the lese majeste law (Section 112) and the emergency decree. Meanwhile, the court has dropped 7 other charges against him.

The defendant is filing for an appeal at the time of reporting.

As of last month, at least 257 people have been charged with Section 112 since 2020, according to the Thai Lawyers for Human Rights.

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Aim Tanakorn
The local news translator at The Pattaya News. Aim is a twenty-four year old who currently lives in Bangkok. Interested in English translation, story-telling, and entrepreneurship, he believes that hard-working is an indispensable component of every success in this world.