AP: “Thai academic accused of insulting monarchy flees“:
A prominent academic facing 15 years in prison for allegedly insulting Thailand’s monarchy fled to England, saying Monday he does not believe he will receive a fair trial.
Ji Ungpakorn, a political scientist at Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University, was charged last month under the so-called lese majeste law over a book about Thailand’s 2006 military coup. His case is the latest in a spate of prosecutions and increased censorship of Web sites allegedly critical of the royal family.
“There is no justice in Thailand,” said Ji in an e-mail sent Monday to The Associated Press. “The regime seems to be inching toward a police state.”
Thailand is a constitutional monarchy but has severe lese majeste laws, mandating a jail term of three to 15 years for “whoever defames, insults or threatens the king, the queen, the heir to the throne or the Regent.”