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On 28 Aug, the Criminal Court found Daranee Charnchoengsilapakul guilty as charged and sentenced her to 18 years in jail.

Daranee was convicted on three counts for her three public speeches at political rallies at Sanam Luang on 7, 13 June, and 18-19 July 2008. The punishment for each count is 6 years in jail.

Daranee’s lawyer will appeal the case.

There were about 30 people who came to give moral supports to Daranee at the court.

Immediately after the verdict, Daranee went on to the hearing of another case in which she was sued for libel by Gen Saprang Kanlayanamitr, one of the 2006 coup leaders.  The court will give its ruling on 16 Sept 2009.   

The Criminal Court has held the lèse majesté trials in secret since the first day of hearing, 23 June 2009, claiming Article 117 of the Criminal Code which concerns national security.

The defendant asked the Criminal Court on 25 June to temporarily suspend the hearings and forward her complaint to the Constitutional Court to consider whether the Criminal Court’s order to hold the trials in secret was in violation of the defendant’s rights according to the 2007 Constitution or not, but the Court dismissed her request and insisted that its order was not unconstitutional as the defendant had her lawyer and could produce any evidence and witnesses at the court.

On 27 Aug, the defense lawyer Prawase Praphanukul filed the complaint himself with the Constitutional Court.

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