On 19 October 2022 Narathiwat Provincial Court read the verdict of “Pakpinya”, a 31-year-old former librarian in Bangkok who was charged under Section 112 of Thailand’s Criminal Code and Computer Crime Act 14 (3). She was accused of posting six texts allegedly insulting King Maha Vajiralongkorn (Rama X)
Pakpinya was convicted under Section 112 (Lese-Majesty) and Section 14(3) of Computer Crime Act for three offenses out of six offenses that she was accused of. The Court ruled that Pakpinya is the Facebook user that wants to send messages to King Rama X in an insulting and ill-wishing manner. Pakpinya was given a sentence without suspension to 3 years of imprisonment for each offense, in a total of 9 years jail term.
The first offense is Pakpinya’s Facebook post on 17 November 2020.
The post was shared from ‘เยาวชนปลดแอก-Free YOUTH’ Facebook page containing a picture of police controlling the crowd with water cannon with the written text “Urgent! the police are controlling the crowd with water cannon for the fifth time and they announce that rubber bullets will be employed!” which the defendant wrote;
“If we were to wear a yellow shirt, they’d probably let us in. The father said he loves all of us, we are the land of compromise. Deceitful!”
The court interpreted the post as leading the reader to think that King Rama X lied to the third person.
The second offense is Pakpinya’s Facebook post on 24 November 2020
The post was shared from “KTUK-คนไทยยูเค” (Konthai UK) Facebook Page suggesting that King Rama X is the commander of the crowd controlling mission of the upcoming protest on 25 November 2020 and plan to use Section.112 against the leaders of the protests.
Pakpinya wrote “Things are not the same anymore.” in her post.
The court interpreted the message directed at King Rama X as being related to the protest and that he is a violent person and ordered yellow shirts group to contain the protesters. Such a message defames the King.
The third offense is Pakpinya’s Facebook post on 31 December 2021
The post was shared from a Facebook account stating “If Sanam Luang is only used to hold a funeral, I wish you will get to use it ever so often”. Pakpinya wrote, “by the end of this year”. along with her post.
The court sees that Sanam Luang is a place that holds only funerals of the royals, even though the accused did not indicate any specific name in the post. Still, there’s no evidence that ordinary persons have used Sanam Luang to hold their funerals. It’s interpreted as cursing King Rama X because neither the King nor his queen is ill.
Pakpinya was granted bail to defend herself in the court of appeal. The surety for her bail was initially set at 150,000 but later raised to 200,000 baht provided by “Ratsadornprasong Fund”.
Furthermore, the case of Pakpinya is one of at least eight cases charged under Section 112 that Pasit Chanhuatone, an English language tutor filed a complaint against at Su-ngai Kolok police station in Narathiwat. None of the accused resides in the southern province of Thailand.
To this date, Narathiwat Provincial Court has four verdicts of some of these cases including the case of “Udom” who was sentenced to six-year jail term for posting and sharing 7 Facebook messages. His sentence was reduce to four year and he was granted bail awaiting to appeal. Other cases include “Kanlaya”, “Waree”, and Pakpinya. Only the case of “Waree” has been dismissed reasoning that the plaintiff’s witness is not substantially convincing that the defendant posted what she was accused of.
Another case of “Chaichana” is a person with mental illness who resides in Lampoon northern Thailand. The case’s witness examination has not yet begun.
There are also two other juvenile cases that the public prosecutors are required to indict within their domicile.