Rubber duck timetable lands Thai man in jail for mocking the monarch


A court in Thailand has doomed a man to three times in jail – changed to two times without parole, according to reports – after he was set up shamefaced of dealing a timetable that featured rubber ducks and which the execution claimed had defamed the country’s monarch.

Bangkok’s Criminal Court ruled that the timetable for 2021 contained filmland of unheroic ducks in acts that recalled and scouted Thailand’s King Maha Vajiralongkorn, dwindling his character, the Thai attorneys for Human Rights( TLHR) group said in a statement on Wednesday.

The suspect, Narathorn Chotmankongsin, 26, was set up shamefaced of vilification and doomed to three times in jail following his six- day trial which ended on Tuesday, Human Rights Watch said.

The court declared that six duck illustrations in the timetable were created to mock the king, according to reports.

“ This case sends a communication to all Thais, and to the rest of the world, that Thailand is moving further down from – not near to – getting a rights- esteeming republic, ” Elaine Pearson, Asia director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement on Wednesday.

Executing someone for dealing sarcastic timetables “ shows that Thai authorities are now trying to discipline any exertion they suppose to be affronting the monarchy, ” Pearson said.

Thailand’spro-democracy movement has used unheroic inflatable ducks to symbolise their cause for political reform, which also includes reforming the Thai monarchy “ as a abecedarian step toward a popular transition ”, HRW said.

According to the French news agency AFP, the suspect was originally handed a three- time captivity term after he was arrested for dealing the timetables on apro-democracy Facebook runner.

“ But the judgment was changed to two times without parole after the defendant gave evidence that was salutary to the consideration, ” AFP quoted the TLHR group as saying.

“ The unheroic bath toys came an accidental symbol of 2020’spro-democracy kick movement after demonstrators used large inflatable ducks to shield themselves from police gash gas and water cannon, ” AFP reported.

According to TLHR, further than 230 people have been charged under Thailand’s draconian lese- majeste laws since 2020.

The law allows for jail terms of between three and 15 times for anyone who defames, cuts or threatens the king, the queen, the heir at law apparent or the regent. The law has long drawn review for its harshness and the ease with which anyone can file a complaint, which critics say has allowed for its use for prejudiced political purposes.

The law has come a focus ofpro-democracy activists, who have called for it to be amended or abolished.

“ Thai authorities should permit peaceful expression of all shoes, including those related to the monarchy, ” HRW’s Pearson said.

“ The government should urgently engage with United Nations experts and others about embarking on a process of amending the lese- majeste law to bring it into compliance with Thailand’s transnational mortal rights scores. ”