Keep an Eye on Court’s Judgement in “Petch” case – the first Central Juvenile and Family Court’s judgement of a juvenile case charged under section 112 (lèse-majesté) for giving a speech on 6 December 2020 at Wongwian Yai.

November 22, 2022 marks the first Central Juvenile and Family Court’s judgement of a juvenile case charged under section 112 (Lèse-majesté) of Black case number Yor Chor Aor 109/2564.

“Petch” Thanakorn (last name withheld) a nineteen-years old LGBTQ+ activist who was indicted on the ground of violating Section 112 (lèse-majesté), one of Thailand’s strictest Criminal Code for giving a speech that allegedly defaming the royal family on 6 December 2020 when he was 17 years old.

“Petch” was indicted together with Chukiat Saengwong and Wannawalee Thammasattaya after Jakkapong Klinkaew, the leader of “The people center for the protection of Monarchy” (ศปปส) filed a complaint against them. The case of “Petch” is considered the first Juvenile case indicted under section 112. He decided to defend himself in court instead of entering “a Special Measure” offered by the court instead of the ordinary court proceedings.

The indictment states that “Petch” gave a speech that tarnishes and defames King Maha Vajiralongkorn (Rama X). His speech is not opinion or truth but defamation towards King Rama X and livestreamed on social media leading audience to believe that King Rama X is a bad person and above the law who is not subjected to any punishment.

The public prosecutor states that his speech defames the father of King Rama X (King Rama IX) for endorsing, allowing, accepting or acknowledging the coup of 2014 which constitutes falsehood.

“Petch” denied all charges.

The witness examinations of the case were held during 17-25 August 2022 at Central Juvenile and Family Court with a total of 7 plaintiff’s witnesses and four defendant’s witnesses who were the defendant himself, the guardian, and two academics.

At present, “Petch” has been prosecuted in 8 cases including three cases charged under Section 112 for giving a speech at “Nonthaburi Pier” on 10 September 2020, “wearing crop top” at Paragon mall on 20 December 2020, and this case that the verdict will be read tomorrow (November 22,2022).

“Petch” is the only minor who was charged under section 116 (sedition) for giving a speech at “Nonthaburi Pier”. The defendant still insists to defend himself in court for this case instead of entering the “special measure” as he hopes that his case will be a milestone for other juvenile cases of section 112.