Monday, August 26, 2019

Court grants surety-free bail to six political activists

Sep 27. 2018
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By THE NATION

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PUBLIC PROSECUTORS yesterday took six leaders of a group calling for an early election to Criminal Court for provoking sedition and violating a junta ban on political gatherings.

The defendants, meanwhile, were granted bail without a guarantee, though they face a Bt200,000 fine if any of the bail conditions are violated. 

The lawsuit was filed with the Criminal Court against political activists Sirawich Serithiwat, Anon Numpa, Chonthicha Jangrew, Nuttaa Mahattana, Sukrit Piensuwan and Kan Pongprapapun. 

They were charged yesterday with violating Article 116 of the Criminal Code on sedition and Order No 3/2558 of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), which prohibits any political gatherings of five or more.

The case resulted from a rally led by the six defendants at Democracy Monument in February. In the rally, the leaders called on the junta to “stop trying to stay longer in power” and instead call an early election.

About two dozen people gathered in front of the court yesterday to offer the defendants moral support.

In the same case, protest leader Rangsiman Rome, who leads the Democracy Restoration Group, had been taken to court in April. 

Nuttaa, one of the six defendants, said 15 political activists face sedition charges in six different cases in connection with their pro-election gatherings. They were each facing a guarantee of Bt1.5 million to ensure their temporary release while fighting their cases. 

“That’s a lot of money and we can’t raise enough funds for all,” she said.

 

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