Phang Nga Mob Enraged by Alleged Royal Defamation Post

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Phang Nga — Hundreds of people gathered Saturday night in front of a roti store to demand an apology from a shop owner’s son over Facebook post they said defamed the monarchy.

One day after a similair incident in Phuket, nearly 500 people in Takua Thung district gathered in front of a local roti store at 7pm, where they remained for four hours asking the shop owner’s son, a conscript from the Third Naval Area Command, to apologize for defaming the late King on Facebook.

Facebook username “RiskeeNumber FourEleven” who is believed to be the roti shop owner’s son, write a message Saturday asking if people love their own fathers like this. The page was shut down after the raid.

The incident was captured live on Bongkoch Phromduang and JJ Khomta’s Facebook accounts. Various clips showed a large crowd gathering and shouting for the sailor to come out and say he was for his message.

Seventy policemen were sent to the scene to negotiate with the angry mob, along with Navy’s Chief Staff, who insisted that the sailor wasn’t at the Third Naval Area as he was on leave to visit his ailing, pregnant wife. However, he’ll be punished for breaking the navy’s code of conduct when he returns Monday.

The roti store owner promised the crowd he would bring his son to deliver a public apology when he’s back in town.

The crowd was satisfied and dispersed at about 11:30pm. No injuries or damage was reported.

“Defaming that Royal Family is considered intolerable for Thais,” Col. Boontavee Tohraksa, acting commander of Phang Nga police said. “No matter whether it’s against the law or not, such insulting actions could make people gather easily.”

The sailor faces charges of royal defamation under Section 112 and violation of the Computer Crime Act.

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