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Legal aid fund ‘needs a boost’: Justice Minister

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Legal aid fund ‘needs a boost’: Justice Minister
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: A State Justice Fund needs to be boosted and made easier to access so that poor people who face legal charges get equal access to bail, Justice Minister Gen Paiboon Khumchaya said yesterday.

“I would be glad if a billionaire and someone with just 10 baht had equal access to justice,” the minister said. Gen Paiboon is also a deputy leader of the military junta in charge of justice.

The general gave a wide-ranging outline of his views on the justice system to the public yesterday at the 13th National Symposium on Justice Administration at Queen Sirikit Convention Center in Bangkok.

He admitted that he’s tired because he has no legal background, but since taking office he has recognized that the Justice Ministry’s responsibility is huge and important.

“There are many good proposed laws that have never been passed because various state agencies are at odds with one another, or because it affects vested interests groups,” he confided.

Gen Paiboon added that the current military-led administration and the junta-appointed National Legislative Assembly would, however, seek to pass 151 bills during its term.

‘A chance to defend themselves’

In regard to the Justice Fund, Gen Paiboon said an agreement was signed with the National Police on December 8 to get police to inform people of their rights and to make free lawyers available, plus bail money, at more police stations.

“We just want everyone to have the chance to defend themselves fully in the judicial process. Many were imprisoned simply because they had no access to bail money.” He added that no one would want a family member to be in such a situation.

Gen Paiboon acknowledged that many people in rural areas still did not know about the Justice Fund, but said the ministry was trying hard to spread the word among the rural poor.

Another problem cited by Gen Paiboon is that in some far-flung areas there may be a court but no other justice-related state offices, which reduced local people’s access to justice.

Other justice issues included so-called stateless people born in Thailand who do not readily earn Thai citizenship. Gen Paiboon said these people were often refused access to basic education, rendering them illiterate and a burden on society.

The minister said the issue of citizenship should be separated from access to basic education.

On drugs, Gen Paiboon questioned whether small-time drug takers should be imprisoned and wondered if jailing such people was the right way to deal with the issue.

Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krua-ngam, who gave an opening speech at the symposium, outlined three gaps in the justice system: people’s access to it, people’s distrust of court verdicts, and the gap among various justice-related organizations.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

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Pattaya

20 people arrested at Pattaya restaurant for allegedly violating alcohol ban

Tanutam Thawan

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Stock photo by Bence Boros for Unsplash

Police in Pattaya arrested 20 people last night at a local restaurant where alcohol was reportedly being sold. While Chon Buri recently eased disease control restrictions, now allowing restaurants in the province to offer dine-in services again, alcohol sales and consumption at restaurants are still prohibited.

Saewana restaurant was raided at around 11pm last night by officers from Pattaya and the Banglamung district station. Alcohol was served in glasses and the bottles were hidden, police say.

Pattaya News says all 20 people at the restaurant were arrested, including the owner. They face charges for allegedly violating the provincial disease control order. Those who violate the Emergency Decree could face a hefty fine or even imprisonment.

A police officer who spoke to a Pattaya News reporter said that there is a zero-tolerance policy for alcohol consumption at restaurants as the policy has been made clear to the public.

SOURCE: Pattaya News

 

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Thailand

Thailand News Today | Releasing 50,000 prisoners, Covid sniffer dogs, bungled kidnap | May 18

Tanutam Thawan

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Following an abortive attempt at a kidnap for ransom at the end of March, 3 people are currently under arrest, National vaccine rollout could finally get underway next week, pecially trained sniffer dogs will soon be deployed on the streets of Bangkok to sniff out cases of Covid-19 infection, Koh Samet reopening to visitors after being closed for 3 weeks and Local fishermen have found space debris, possibly from a satellite or parts of a used launch rocket.

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Active Covid-19 clusters reported in 16 Bangkok districts

Tanutam Thawan

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Photo via Facebook/กรุงเทพมหานคร โดยสำนักงานประชาสัมพันธ์

Bangkok residents living in any of the 16 districts in the capital with active Covid-19 clusters are being advised to strictly follow disease control measures. Spokesperson Taweesilp Visanuyothin made the warning during today’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration briefing.

In the latest wave of Covid-19 infections, more than 28,000 cases have been reported in Bangkok. Taweeslip says there have been 29 clusters. 8 of those outbreaks have been controlled while the other 21 clusters are still active.

Some of the clusters include…

  • Construction workers’ camps in Khlong Toey, Laksi and Watthana
  • Khlong Toey slum communities
  • Huai Khwang market
  • Prisons in the Chatuchak district

The outbreak at a construction site in Laksi is one of the largest clusters with 885 cases reported yesterday and another 1,107 cases were confirmed today.

Active Covid-19 clusters reported in 16 Bangkok districts | News by Thaiger

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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