Criminal Court grants conditional release to 31 anti-government protesters

Thailand’s Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases granted conditional bail to 31 anti-government “Talu Fah” protesters this afternoon (Tuesday), after finding that the charges against them do not carry high penalties and in the belief that they will not attempt to escape after their release.

The protesters, including Jatupat Boonpattararaksa, aka Pai Dao Din, were arrested by police yesterday and Sunday. Jatupat and several other protesters were arrested in front of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau, as they protested to demand the release of their colleagues and a public address truck being held there.

The court set bail at 100,000 baht for each of the protesters and rejected the use of parliamentary status by MPs as bail. The court has also forbidden the accused from participating in future protests or activities which may cause unrest and barred them from leaving the country without the court’s permission.

All the protesters, who had been held at the Region 1 Border Patrol Police Command in Pathum Thani province, were later escorted by police to Thung Song Hong police station, from where they are to be released.

Today, protesters gathered in front of the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, at Pathumwan intersection, to mark the first anniversary of the Harry Potter-themed protest held at Bangkok’s the Democracy Monument a year ago today, in which a call for monarchy reform was made, by human rights lawyer and activist Anon Nampa, in public for the first time.

The rally led by Anon and Passaravalee “Mind” Thanakitvibulphol, called for the resignation of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, transparency in government vaccine procurements and reiterate the call for monarchy reform.

The group vowed to return on Saturday August 7th, which marks the day, 56 years ago, when the now defunct Communist Party of Thailand launched an armed rebellion against the Thai state.

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