Convicted Red Shirt prisoner Somyot Prueksakasemsuk recently petitioned the Director of the Criminal Court Mr. Tawee Prajuablab to investigate the facts surrounding his arrest at the Thai-Cambodian border on the 30th of April 2011 and reevaluate his request for bail.
Somyot has been denied bail 13 times on the basis that he was attempting to flee the country when he was intercepted by border officials who have since allegedly opposed granting him bail. In a letter addressed to Mr. Tawee, Somyot explains that such allegations conflict with the facts as well as witness testimony.
if the Court were willing to assess the claim that I had tried to flee, the primary justification for the denial of my bail requests, I would be ready to submit evidence to the contrary. However, no such investigation has occurred, despite the fact that I have filed 13 bail requests as well as several appeals to the Court to investigate the facts surrounding my arrest. Consequently, the allegation that I tried to escape my charges is void of factual evidence and my inability to present my account of the facts has caused me to suffer the punishment of incarceration prior to my conviction.
Somyot cites the witness testimony of Police Senior Sergeant Major Kanokrat Tonloh, an immigration official in the province of Sa Kaew, who stated that he had not intended to escape.
Initially I found information in the computer system that there was an arrest warrant against the accused. I informed him of this immediately but he didn’t seem to resist in any way at the time, he dressed normally, there was nothing to cover his face and he lined up like everybody else to get his passport checked. He was traveling with a group of tourists, I have been informed that he is a tourist guide that takes tourists to many countries in Indochina.
Somyot also quotes Mr. Prasit Buarak of the Special Prosecutor’s officer who investigated and filed Somyot’s black case numberอ.2962/2554 dated the 22nd of July 2011.
Mr. Prasit’s submission stated,
Whether the accused should be granted bail must depend on the court’s consideration.
Considering these facts, Somyot believes that his constitutional rights have been violated:
The refusal of bail and imprisonment for a long period of time constitutes a form of torture. The accused is treated like a convicted prisoner, with no comfort, justice, or the opportunity to properly defend his or her case. It diminishes the accused’s human value and violates section 39-40 of the 2007 Constitution.
His plea ends with the determination that Red Shirts and others have come to expect from Somyot,
I wish to defend my case until the very end. To appeal my case may require years, at least two and possibly as many as five. I may even be dead before the outcome is certain. I urge you to reconsider your position and to grant me the opportunity of a fair trial.