Arnon Arrested, Again, for Leading Reform Protest

Arnon Nampha at the Criminal Court on Aug. 19, 2020.
Arnon Nampha at the Criminal Court on Aug. 19, 2020.

BANGKOK — Civil rights lawyer and activist Arnon Nampha was arrested Wednesday evening on charges related to a Harry Potter-themed political rally earlier this month.

Yaowalak Anuphan, head of Thai Lawyers for Human Rights group, said he was taken into custody in front of the Criminal Court in Bangkok at around 7.15pm. He was at the court to work on a case.

“He will probably spend a night at the police station before he has to be produced to the court,” Yaowalak said. “We will have to wait and see tomorrow whether a bail will be granted.”

The warrant accused him of seditious acts under Article 116 of the Criminal Code, which carries a maximum penalty of seven years in jail. He was also charged for violating the Computer Crime Act.

The charges followed his speech at an anti-government rally at the Democracy Monument on August 3, where he made critical remarks about the country’s sacrosanct institution.

Earlier this month, Arnon was arrested for similar charges for his role in another protest on July 18, his attorney said. He was later granted bail while his trial was ongoing.

He was taken to Chana Songkram Police Station to hear his charges.

A policeman shows Arnon his arrest warrant on Aug. 19, 2020.