Reds threaten to capture judges

Four red-shirt leaders have defied the charter court's defamation complaint and threatened to capture the nine judges in a citizen's arrest.

The Constitution Court on Friday filed a complaint with the Crime Suppression Division against the red-shirt leaders who have been organising a protest in front of the court.

The court accused the four leaders of defamation and inciting unrest. Representatives of the court on Friday filed the complaint, along with a recording of speeches made during the protest.

The complaint accuses the red-shirt leaders of defaming the court judges, in violation of sections 136 and 198 of the Criminal Code.

The accused are: Pongpisit Kongsena, or Lek Bandon, leader of a red-shirt group called Radio Broadcasters for Democracy; Thanachai Seehin, a radio show host; Mongkol Nongbualamphu; and Sornrak Malaithong. About 200 red shirts have been gathering in front of the Constitution Court.

The protesters on Thursday submitted a 20,000-name petition to the National Anti-Corruption Commission seeking to oust the judges.

The red shirts have been rallying since Monday to demand that all nine judges step down after the court decided to review whether the charter amendment bills being vetted by parliament were constitutional.

Mr Pongpisit on Friday urged "civil disobedience" to reject the court's defamation suit against him and the other three red-shirt leaders.

Mr Pongpisit said the court lacked legitimacy in performing its duties and that they will not acknowledge the charge. He urged red-shirt supporters to "capture" the court's nine judges wherever they see them, an INN News report said.

More than 250 police officers have been deployed at the court. Mr Pongpisit said the judges have attempted to block moves to amend the constitution.

Pheu Thai MP for Chiang Rai Samart Kaewmeechai said yesterday he had now gathered more than 100 signatures of MPs supporting another impeachment campaign against the judges.

The figure is sufficient as the impeachment bid needs only a quarter of members of parliament, he said.

Mr Samart will also submit an open letter to the court next week to denounce its decision to accept for consideration the petition against charter change filed by Senator Somchai Sawaengkarn.

About the author

Writer: Wassayos Ngamkham and Aekarach Sattaburuth