Stars accused of defying decree

Stars accused of defying decree

CMPO claims actors entered off-limits areas

The Centre for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO) will summon a group of actors and actresses who support the protest movement.

It accuses them of defying the bans on entering 13 government offices, 25 roads and the Rama VIII bridge, declared off-limits to the public on Friday.

Caretaker Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul did not identify the stars but said they would face criminal abuse charges under the emergency decree.

Mr Surapong, who is the CMPO adviser, said the actors and actresses have taken turns criticising the government on stages set up by the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) group since it kicked off its Bangkok shutdown campaign on Jan 13.

Mr Surapong said the CMPO also could start issuing arrest warrants for those who are defying the entry bans under the emergency decree.

In response, actor Sorawit Suboon, better known as Kong, who regularly attends the PDRC's rallies, posted on Instagram a picture of Mr Surapong with two horns on his head.

Mr Surapong also warned PDRC supporters not to surround the Defence Ministry's permanent secretary's office in Muang Thong Thani in Nonthaburi as caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra is using it as her office.

Mr Surapong said if they defy the entry bans, the CMPO will arrest them immediately.

Mr Surapong dismissed reports Ms Yingluck left Bangkok for Chiang Mai yesterday to monitor advance voting there, saying she stayed at her home on Yothin Pattana Soi 3 on the Ram Intra-Ekamai expressway in Bangkok.

Caretaker Labour Minister Chalerm Yubamrung, who is also the CMPO director, said Ms Yingluck instructed him to avoid using heavy-handed measures against PDRC protesters.

CMPO member Tarit Pengdith yesterday asked those who have been unable to make financial transactions, pay off loan interest or monthly car and house installments during the PDRC's rallies to complain to police stations and the Crime Suppression Division on Phahon Yothin Road between tomorrow and next Monday.

He said the government will work with financial institutions to extend repayment periods or reduce punishment fees.

After the end of the protests, the CMPO will propose the government consider giving assistance to businesses that have worked with the CMPO to help the public, he said.

PDRC leader Suthep Thaugsuban said he will lead supporters to surround the CMPO headquarters at the Narcotics Suppression Bureau on Vibhavadee Rangsit Road.

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