Arrest for sending lèse majesté SMSs-PPT

September 24, 2010

Lese majeste SMSs

Political Prisoners in Thailand: August 4, 2010

The Bangkok Post reports that the “Crime Suppression Division police on Tuesday arrested a 60-year-old man for sending SMS messages considered offensive to the monarchy to many important people, including Prime Minister Abhisith Vejjajiva.” He will likely be charged with lese majeste.

It reports that the man is Ampol Tangnopkul, who was arrested in Samut Prakan, “with three mobile phones in his possession.” He was arrested “after police and officials of the Information and Communication Technology Ministry investigated and found that he had sent the offensive messages.” Ampol denies the charges. He is alleged to have sent messages four times to Abhisit between 9-11 May, to other cabinet members, and also to Tul Srisomwong, reported in the Post as “leader of the multi-colour group” but, in fact, a People’s Alliance for Democracy activist.

The police seem confused as well saying Ampol is unemployed and failing to understand how he could have “telephone numbers of important people in the country,” speculating that “he had been used by some other people.”

At the same time, Ampol is said to have “been blacklisted as a hard-core member of the red shirts of Samut Prakan province by the Internal Security Operations Command…”.

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