(BANGKOK, April 12, 2022)—On April 12, 2022, the U.S. Department of State 2021 Country Report on Human Rights Practices for Thailand highlighted the continued judicial harassment by Thammakaset against human rights defender Angkhana Neelapaijit. Specifically, the report reads: 

In August, the Southern Bangkok Criminal Court accepted a defamation case brought in late 2019 by poultry firm Thammakaset against human rights defender Angkhana Neelaphaijitin [sic]. The complaint alleged that Angkhana defamed the company in two social media posts in 2018 and 2019 expressing support for other human rights defenders facing lawsuits brought by Thammakaset.

Since 2016, Thammakaset has brought at least 37 complaints against 23 human rights defenders. In the two remaining cases, Angkhana Neelapaijit, Fortify Rights Senior Human Rights Specialist Puttanee Kangkun, and   former Fortify Rights Communications Associate Thanaporn Saleephol face several counts of criminal defamation, which includes a penalty of imprisonment if convicted.

Fortify Rights has consistently advocated for an end to this case and others brought by Thammakaset against human rights defenders, including through more than 30 publications and 20 private meetings and communications with government officials and members of the diplomatic communnity. Fortify Rights has also provided regular support to human rights defenders facing judicial harassment by Thammakaset, including by securing more than US$50,000 in emergency relief grants to cover their legal expenses, court administrative fees, and personal expenses of the affected human rights defenders.

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