Skip to main content

Already a subscriber? Make sure to log into your account before viewing this content. You can access your account by hitting the “login” button on the top right corner. Still unable to see the content after signing in? Make sure your card on file is up-to-date.

The former Prime Minister of Thailand, Thaksin Shinawatra, is set to go on trial next month on charges of insulting the monarchy.

Thaksin, who returned to Thailand last year after spending 15 years in exile, will face the charges under the country’s strict lese-majeste law. According to prosecutors, in an interview with a South Korean newspaper in 2015, Thaksin accused the King’s top advisors of creating a 2014 military coup in the country, which ultimately led to his sister being removed from office.

0001b187 500

Prayuth Pecharakun, a spokesman for Thailand’s attorney general, announced that the 74-year-old former leader would appear in court on June 18. In addition to the lese-majeste charge, Thaksin is also accused of violating the Computer Crime Act.

Thaksin’s lawyer, Winyat Chatmontree, expressed his client’s determination to fight the charges, stating, “He is ready to prove his innocence in the justice system.”

Thaksin’s legal battles are part of a broader context of Thailand’s political landscape, where lese-majeste laws have been increasingly enforced since 2020 against protesters, activists, and politicians advocating for reform. Each violation of this law carries a potential 15-year prison sentence.

Digging Deeper:
Initially elected as Prime Minister in 2001, he was ousted in a military coup five years later, driven by widespread protests and opposition from the pro-royalist, pro-military elite. Despite his exile, Thaksin’s populist movement continued to influence Thai politics, winning elections that were later nullified by military coups or judicial rulings. The current charges stem from comments he made during a 2015 interview with South Korean media, as reported by Prayuth.


Keep up to date with our latest videos, news and content