Thursday, 5 January 2017

Call for the release of student activist Jatupat detained for sharing BBC Thai article on Facebook

Final year law student and activist Jatupat “Pai Dao Din” Boonpattararaksa, who was charged on December 3, 2016  with violating Article 112 of Thai Penal Code- the lese majeste law - and the Computer Crime Act for sharing on the BBC Thai article about the monarchy. He was re-arrested, and his bail revoked, on December 22, after he posted additional Facebook comments regarding the circumstances of his arrest and prosecution. 

UPDATE: 20 January 2017

Jatupat was denied bail again and the hearing on his bail application was held in secret. The court's deliberation was closed except for Jatupat and his parents. He was kept in jail under the fifth round of 12- day detention following a police court request.

Jatupat missed final examination when the court rejected a bail request which filed by Jatupat’s legal team for his temporarily release to sit for it at Khon Kaen University on January 17-18, 2017. The exams is mandatory to complete his bachelor’s degree in law.

Jatupat Boonpattaraksa may face up to 15 years imprisonment for sharing BBC article. He remains detained in Khon Kaen Central Prison in north-eastern Thailand. 


The BBC Thai news article shared by Jatupat collected data on the new King Vajiralongkorn and was released on 1 December 2016 to mark the royal succession. It has received a lot of public attention, with 27,000 likes and more that 2,600 shared on Facebook before Jatupat’s arrest.  Jatupat had shared the said article on the morning of 2 December 2016, along with an excerpt; however, he did not publish personal comments on the article. 

The complaint was made against Jatupat by senior military officer from the 23rd Military Circle in Khon Kaen province were the activist staged a much-publicized protest against Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-O-Cha , during his visit. That military unit in Khon Kaen has arrested him many times for holding public protests and other peaceful activities to oppose the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) junta and demand a transition to democratic civilian rule.

The officer neither filed the similar complaint against other social media users nor the content creator, BBC-Thai.

Jatupat is the only individual who has been arrested and charged with a crime for doing so. He was released on 400,000 Thai bath (approx.£ 9,200 ) bail the following day. 

In addition, it has been informed about abusive cavity searches to which  Jatuphat has been regularly subjected in Khon Kaen Provincial Correctional Institution, every time he returns from a court hearing.

Jatupat is also facing four different lawsuits and is an example of a Thai pro-democracy activist who has opposed the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) administration and its staging of the coup on 22 May 2014, by simply exercising his freedom of expression and assembly.

Action Requested:

Please write a letter, send an email, call, fax or tweet to the Thai Government for the release of Jatupat 
  • Expressing your concern for Jatupat Boonpattararaksa's unfair imprisonment.
  • Urging Thai Authorities to release Jatupat Boonpattararaksa immediately and stop all criminal proceeding against him
  • Calling Thai authoritiesto respect everyone's rights to freedom of expression, including online.

General Prayuth Chan-ocha
Goverment House
Pitsanulok Road, Dusit
Bangkok 10300, Thailand
Fax: +66 2282 5131
Salutation: Dear Prime Minister

Minister for Foreign Affairs
Don Pramudwinai
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Sri Ayudhya Road
Bangkok 10400, Thailand
Fax: +66 2643 5320/ +66 2643 5314
Salutation: Dear Minister

Please also write to the diplomatic mission or embassy of Thailand in your respective country.

On social media campaign

The call to action to support is simple.
  • Take a picture of yourself, or your group holding a sign calling upon Thai authorities to free an imprisoned student activists and to stop harassing him, and post it and/or tweet it on our Facebook page or on Twitter- with hashtags #FreePai
  • Spread the word and share this campaign via Twitter, Facebook, emails, etc;
  • Share your comment, details of his case and calling for his freedom.
You can use our Tweet template below
Support @thaihrc to take action to #FreePai student activist in #Thailand (add your picture to the tweet)
Every Voice Counts!

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