The Criminal Court yesterday sentenced a man to two years in jail for renting his flat to a red-shirt activist to install equipment used to scramble radio frequencies of the Office of the Maritime Promotion Commission.
The owner of the room, Theerapat Bunpa, and red-shirt activist, Chinnawat Habunpad, were charged with colluding to possess and use radio communications equipment without permission, establishing a radio communications station without permission as well as scrambling and blocking official radio communication. The prosecutors said they breached Sections 6, 11, 22 and 23 of the 1955 Radio Communications Act.The duo committed the offences from January 9 to April 12, 2009 at MP Tower in Bangkok’s Din Daeng district. Their alleged intent was to block or disturb radio frequencies of the Office of the Maritime Promotion Commission.
Both defendants have pleaded not guilty.
Chinnawat failed to show up at the hearing today and now faces an arrest warrant. Theerawat testified that he had unknowingly rented the room to Chinnawat, who used it as a base to scramble the signals.
The court said Theerawat’s claim that he had no idea of what Chinnawat was doing carried no weight because he obviously knew something, which is why he charged more than Bt10,000 per month in rent. Theerawat’s three-year sentence was communted to two as he provided useful testimony.
His lawyer will apply for a Bt200,000bail and file an appeal.