67 yellow-shirts acquitted over airport seizure

67 yellow-shirts acquitted over airport seizure

Court claims that the PAD demonstration was quiet and that the protesters were armed.

67 yellow-shirts acquitted over airport seizure
People’s Alliance for Democracy ( PAD ) demonstrators take over the government’s temporary office at Don Mueang airport, Bangkok, on Nov 25, 2008. ( Photo: Pattanapong Hirunard )

Sixty-seven more People’s Alliance for Democracy ( PAD ) members have been cleared of a number of charges, including inciting unrest in connection with the 2008 sequestration of Don Mueang airport.

The ruling was read out at the Criminal Court on Friday after open prosecutors filed a suit against the yellowish- dressed movement members, including Suriyant Thongnu- iad, Chaiwat Sinsuwong, Sarocha Porn- udomsak, Karun Sai- ngam, Veera Somkwamkid, Gen Pathompong Kesornsook and past actress Sirilak” Joy” Pongchok, for unlawful assembly, inciting public unrest and related offences for their involvement in the seizure of Don Mueang airport from Nov 24 to Dec 3, 2008.

The first defendant, according to the lawsuit, persuaded people to attend mass demonstrations that took place throughout the airport’s VIP building, which the Secretariat of the Prime Minister held while the Airports of Thailand ( AoT ) was in charge of it during that time.

The defendants ‘ television signal food had been installed close to the radar transmitter of the Aeronautical Radio of Thailand during the meeting. They conducted body searches on Thai Airways International ( THAI ) employees and stoked protesters who had blocked a U-turn bridge. Additionally, they conspired to use power to harm AoT’s home and attack people. This led to injury estimated at 627, 080 ringgit, according to the complaint.

The opposition was aimed at putting pressure on next excellent minister Somchai Wongsawat, who is former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s sibling- in- law, to retire, said the suit.

All defendants denied the charges.

After reviewing all the evidence, the court discovered that the defendants from various occupations had come together to protest Mr. Somchai’s alleged policy corruption. &nbsp,

The court said the gathering was held under the constitution. The ruling disregarded the protest as being peaceful and the protesters were unarmed, which did not constitute terrorism or public unrest.

The court determined that the gathering did not violate either the emergency decree in effect at the time or Section 116 of the Criminal Court. &nbsp,

Earlier this year, 32 PAD members, including Maj Gen Chamlong Srimaung, former media tycoon Sondhi Limthongkul, Somsak Kosaisuk and Suriyasai Katasila, were&nbsp, acquitted of insurrection- related charges&nbsp, in connection with their siege of Don Mueang airport in 2008.

At a homecoming dinner in Chiang Mai province on March 15, 2024, former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, left, and his brother-in-law Somchai Wongsawat sit next to him. ( Pool photo )