11 July 2024

The Constitutional Court today unanimously ruled that the  Move Forward Party and its former leader Pita Limjaroenrat have attempted to overthrow the constitutional monarchy by campaigning to amend the lese majeste law or Article 112 and ordered them to cease all activities related to it.

While the court did not decide whether the reformist party should be disbanded, the ruling is likely to pave the way for subsequent legal efforts to have the party dissolved.

The case stemmed from a petition by lawyer Theerayut Suwankesorn in July last year, accusing the party and its then-leader Pita of seeking to overthrow Thailand’s constitutional monarchy.

Theerayut asked the Constitutional Court to issue an order putting an end to the alleged acts.

He has suggested that a ruling against the party could prompt a new petition to have the party dissolved  for allegedly undermining the monarchy.

In filing the petition with the court last year, he claimed Move Forward’s policy to amend the lese majeste law violates Article 49 of the Constitution, which states that: “No person shall exercise rights or liberties to overthrow the democratic regime of government with the King as head of state.”

The ruling today came a week after the same court cleared Pita of charges that he violated the Constitution and the electoral law by holding media shares while running for office.