BANGKOK - A Thai-born US citizen jailed for insulting the king has been pardoned by the monarch, in a case that drew a protest from the United States.
Joe Wichai Commart Gordon, whose Thai name is Lerpong Wichaikhammat, a car salesman from Colorado, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in December under the kingdom's strict lese majeste laws, which rights campaigners say are used unfairly to stifle freedom of expression.
Gordon "was granted a royal pardon yesterday", a senior Corrections Department official told AFP on Wednesday. Bangkok Remand Prison said he left the jail late Tuesday.
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