The Malaysian authorities arrested defendants of republican charged while awaiting for refugee status from UNHCR in Malaysia

A 58-year woman was arrested by the Malaysian Police and deported back to Thailand on 10th May 2019 while waiting for refugee status from UNHCR in Malaysia. Thai Police then charged her with sedition offense and others for wearing back-shirt labeled with a federal symbol.

On 10 May 2019 at approximately 17.45 hrs. Thai lawyer for Human Rights has been informed that Praphan (reserved surname), 58 years old, used to be a traditional massage therapist (before political asylum) and was a defendant in the case of the Organization for Thai Federation from Malaysia to the Crime  Suppression Division According to the arrest warrant of the Criminal Court No. 55/2562 dated 16 January 2019, the case was wearing a black shirt at The Mall Bang Kapi on 5 December 2018

Phawinee Chumsri, lawyer, followed up to the Crime suppression division, therefore met with Praphan and was in contact with the inquiry officer to inform the allegation. She charges of incitement according to Article 116 of the Penal Code and according to Section 209 of the Penal Code. [1] Then tomorrow (May 11, 2019), the investigating officer will be taken to the authority of the criminal court to be held during the investigation.

Praphan provided additional information that she met another woman being detained for the same reason. But she did not talk as well because the woman was questioned by the inquiry officer and was taken by the soldiers.

Praphan told that she left the country in January 2019 and asked for a status of seeking asylum with the UNHCR in Malaysia. While waitng for the third country to be a refugee, she was arrested by the Malaysian police on April 24, 2019 and detained at the police station for 14 days . She  was then sent to detain at the Immigration Office of Malaysia for 4 days before being deported  back to Thailand.

Praphan was arrested for the first time because she had a black shirt with a federal symbol on September 3, 2018, while she was in her room alone. Soldiers and police in uniform joined 10 officers to search and arrest at the Ladprao area. Officials seized 3 phones, UDD cards, Thaksin Shinawatra pictures and 3 other UDD books. After the search, she was taken to control at Military based for investigation  then taken to Crime Suppression Division to informed the charges. Then, she was temporarily released with a 200,000 baht bail, but the court ordered to seize 200,000 baht cash on 11 February 2019 after she did not appear in court for the second time.

After bailing in the first case, on December 5, 2018 she was taken from The Mall Bangkapi then detained by the police again at Ladprao Police Station with Mr.Therdsak who is the defendant in the same case. After the police questioned about the rally on that day and released her back on the day, on December, 8, 2018 just 1 day before the “Cycling for Love” activity, she was re-detained at the 11th Army Regiment, together with 8 other people, with the wife and son of Mr. Chucheep Chiwasut or Uncle Sanam Luang is also included. Then the military released her on December 14, 2018 without prosecution.

[1] Section 209. Member of a Secret Society. Whoever to be a member of a body of persons whose proceedings are secret and whose aim to be unlawful, is said to be a member of a secret society, shall be punished with imprisonment not exceeding seven years and fined not exceeding fourteen thousand Baht.