April 29, 2016
The Law Society of Upper Canada expresses grave concerns about the harassment of human rights lawyer Sirikan Charoensiri in Thailand.
Sirikan Charoensiri is a lawyer with Thai Lawyers for Human Rights (TLHR). On 26 June 2015, 14 student activists of the New Democracy Movement (NDM) were arrested and charged with violating a prohibition on gatherings of more than five people (Article 116 of the Thai Criminal Code). Sirikan Charoensiri represented the activists at their hearing along with seven other lawyers from the TLHR.
After the activists’ hearing on 27 June 2015, police attempted to conduct a warrantless search of Sirikan Charoensiri’s car. Sirikan Charoensiri refused to consent to the search and attempted to file a complaint alleging police malfeasance. The police refused to accept her complaint and summarily impounded her car. When Sirikan Charoensiri attempted to file another complaint, she was told by a senior officer that the police would take “some form of legal action” against her unless she abandoned her right to complain. The police subsequently obtained a warrant to search her car from the Court; however, reports indicate that they did not advise the presiding judge that the car in question belonged to counsel for the accused. The police then searched Sirikan Charoensiri’s car and seized three of the activists’ mobile phones as evidence. Later that evening, the police finally accepted Sirikan Charoensiri’s complaint against Pol.Lt. Gen. Chayapol Chatchayadetch for the unlawful search and seizure of her car.
The Law Society presently writes to voice its deep concern as a result of reports that Sirikan Charoensiri has been the subject of judicial harassment.
http://www.lsuc.on.ca/newsarchives.aspx?id=2147485737&cid=2147502430 (VERSION FRANCAISE)