Military court gives 1st verdict against anti-coup protester

A military court in Northern Chiang Rai Province on Thursday sentenced an anti-coup protester to three months in jail and fine of 5,000 baht, with the jail term suspended for one year. This is the first verdict given by a military court in cases related to the 22 May coup d’état. 
Sarawut Kulmaturapot, a Chiang Rai red-shirt supporter, was charged with defying an order of the coup-making junta by organizing an anti-coup event at a McDonald’s in a mall in the province on 25 May, parallel to a gathering at a McDonald’s at Bangkok’s Ratchaprasong intersection.
He pleaded guilty.
While Sarawut was not arrested at the scene, seven other protesters were arrested at the fast-food restaurant and now also face trial in a military court. 
Earlier Pathumwan District Court (a civilian court) sentenced  Weerayuth Kongkanatan, 49, to two months in jail and a fine of 6,000 baht, but since the defendant pleaded guilty, the jail term was suspended. This was the first verdict delivered against an anti-coup protester. 
Weerayuth was arrested on 23 May 2014, a day after the coup, while he was protesting against the coup at the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre (BACC), near Siam Square. 


Since 2007, Prachatai English has been covering underreported issues in Thailand, especially about democratization and human rights, despite the risk and pressure from the law and the authorities. However, with only 2 full-time reporters and increasing annual operating costs, keeping our work going is a challenge. Your support will ensure we stay a professional media source and be able to expand our team to meet the challenges and deliver timely and in-depth reporting.

• Simple steps to support Prachatai English

1. Bank transfer to account “โครงการหนังสือพิมพ์อินเทอร์เน็ต ประชาไท” or “Prachatai Online Newspaper” 091-0-21689-4, Krungthai Bank

2. Or, Transfer money via Paypal, to e-mail address: [email protected], please leave a comment on the transaction as “For Prachatai English”