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Showing posts from 2010

A view on Thai Prison Life

Now here is a little vignette that I hope explains some aspects of Thai prison life and frankly causes you some righteous indignation. I'm also hoping that someone will alert Professor Duncan McCargo and his Students at Leeds University about this entry.

'Incidents' occur on a daily basis here in the Hilton. All of them are significant, and most are very indicative of how the Thais Department of Corrections (D.O.C) consider the 'status' of the 300,000 - 350,000 inmates they are charged with managing. What is spread publicly is nearly always diametrically opposed from reality. Rarely do you, the outsider, get a chance to hear from us inmates as to what is really going on in the prisons. Even when we do manage to grab your attention, via blogs such as this, its short work for Embassy staff - in the case especially of the British Embassy - to dismiss what we have to say as being the rantings of disgruntled "criminals who can't do the time".

As I have said …

Repatriation to the UK

At some stage during their incarceration all Britons will consider whether to repatriate from Thailand back to the UK. After cursory research the majority reject the facility. Those that feel that possibly they have an advantage by doing so formalise their intentions by requesting that Mrs Dufall of the Embassy initiates the request by contacting the National Offender Management Service (NOMS) – a division of the UK Ministry of Justice overseeing the incarceration of offenders in British Prisons. We British inmates in Thai jails have been told by Mrs Dufall that this is the official process and nearly all accept this verbal statement. However, this is untrue. An applicant, such as myself, is free to submit their intention directly to NOMS and therefore bypass the British Embassy.What is impressed on us is that NOMS can arbitrarily decide, without stating any reason whatsoever, to reject the application. Whilst this contingency is permitted for by the UK/Thai repatriatio…

Torture by the Royal Thai Police and its acceptance by the UK Government

Due to the troubles in Thailand recently we have not heard much from Gary and so updates have been sparse. However, things are getting back to normal and we have a few blogs to upload as and when we get the chance. In the meantime here is an article by Erika Fry about the routine use of torture by the Royal Thai Police to force people to sign confessions of guilt.

http://www.ahrchk.net/ahrc-in-news/mainfile.php/2006ahrcinnews/763/

This is important as the British Government's stance is that they do not help people who have pled guilty in the Thai Courts. This means they will not support any requests for a Kings Pardon by British Nationals and without the UK Governments support these requests fail.

By not recognizing that the guilty admissions were obtained by torture and then not supporting their own subjects afterwards due to the admission of guilt the UK Government is effectively condoning the torture of British Nationals.

Article written by Jake

A Message from Jake

Some of you may have noticed that the blog has gone quiet. This is not intentional but is due to a few problems.

Some of you may be aware of the political unrest in Thailand. If not, it seems that the Red Shirts, who are supporters of Thaksin Shinawatra the deposed Premier, are trying to force an election to ultimately force the Yellow Shirts out of power. Couple this unrest with the fact that the Thai King has been in hospital after an extended illness and you can see the disruption this may cause. I recommend the Political Prisoners in Thailand website (http://thaipoliticalprisoners.wordpress.com/) for news about what is going on there.

Incidentally despite warning UK travellers of the possibility of bomb and grenades in Central Bangkok and of trouble in other outlying areas, the FCO is only advising travellers to exercise extra caution. (http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/travel-advice-by-country/asia-oceania/thailand). I mean we wouldn’t want to harm the tourist trade…

The Royal Thai Police

It is amazing the number of times that stories of bribery and corruption appear in Thai Newspapers. Currently only those stories that affect the opposition make the Newspapers and it is only thanks to the efforts of other websites (like Political Prisoners in Thailand http://thaipoliticalprisoners.wordpress.com/ ) that any other stories get out.

However, a high proportion of these stories involve the Royal Thai Police. Bribery, corruption, protection rackets and even murder are not uncommon to be reported when they are found out.

Last year the political events in Thailand overshadowed news that came out in January of 2009 about the Thai Police having to arrest other officers that were working as a kidnap gang. It is was reported that these Border patrolmen abused their positions to extract Bt8.7 Million and many people had been wrongly imprisoned (and are still being held) as a direct result of extortion and kidnapping by the Border patrol group called Patrol 41.

The case of Toby Chaurna…