Thai Prison Blogs by Richard Barrow

12,000 Prisoners Released on First Day of Royal Pardon

December 8, 2011
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12,000 Prisoners Released on First Day of Royal Pardon

Thailand’s King has issued a royal command pardoning some 30,000 prisoners to mark his 84th birthday. The decree, which was signed by His Majesty, was published in the Royal Gazette. His Majesty said the convicts should be given a second chance. Those receiving a royal pardon are inmates who displayed good conduct, those convicted of…

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A Public Beheading in Siam

October 2, 2009
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A Public Beheading in Siam

The following is an account of a public execution as witnessed by P.A. Thompson towards the end of the 19th Century: Though murder is not an uncommon form of crime, the death sentence is rarely passed in Siam, and still less often carried out. Executions are public, but not very many, even amongst the Siamese…

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Two Prisoners Executed in Thailand

August 25, 2009
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Two Prisoners Executed in Thailand

  Two drug traffickers on death row at Bang Kwang Prison were executed by lethal injections this evening in Thailand. They were Bundit Charoenwanich, 45, and Jirawat Phumpruek, 52. Both were arrested on March 29, 2001 for having 114,219 methamphetamine tablets in their possession. Convicted of drug trafficking, they were given the capital punishment. Although…

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Overcrowding in Thai Prisons

March 11, 2008
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Overcrowding in Thai Prisons

This is a rare photograph that gives you a good idea of how overcrowded prisons are in Thailand. Unlike their American or European counterparts, Thai prisoners live in open rooms with no beds or furniture of any kind. They aren’t even given any bedding. Sheets can be bought and some people stuff these with old…

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A Foreigner in a Thai Prison

November 3, 2007
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A Foreigner in a Thai Prison

The following is an account of life in Samut Prakan Central Prison sent to us by an American: I was arrested at the airport which is the same for most, if not all foreigners, who for various reasons find themselves in the Samut Prakan Central Prison.  I was first detained and questioned in a small…

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The Last Public Beheading

July 15, 2007
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The Last Public Beheading

Shrine for Boonpeng Heep Lek at Wat Phasee, Ekamai It may seem strange to you and me, but the last person to be executed in Thailand by beheading has his own shrine. In some ways it is the Thai way of making up for past misdeeds. Like the Nang Nak Shrine for the famous Thai ghost,…

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Price List in the Prison Shop

June 30, 2007
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Price List in the Prison Shop

At Samut Prakan Central Prison you are not allowed to bring food and other items for the prisoner you are visiting. If you want to give them something, you will have to buy it in the Prison Shop. The following is a copy of the order form. On the order form, you write down the…

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Samut Prakan Criminal Court

June 16, 2007
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Samut Prakan Criminal Court

There are two major courts in Samur Prakan. The criminal court is in the city alongside the river. Morning court cases are scheduled for 9 a.m. The prison bus arrives at about 9 a.m. However, sometimes it is a bit early. You will hear it coming as they have the sirens going for the entire…

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Visiting Prisoners at Samut Prakan Prison

June 16, 2007
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Visiting Prisoners at Samut Prakan Prison

You can visit prisoners on Monday to Friday. The morning session is reserved for male prisoners. The afternoon for female prisoners. There are usually 13 rounds in the morning which last about 20 minutes. The first round is at 8.40 a.m. but you can come earlier to book your visit. On busy days they will…

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A Foreigner in a Thai Court

May 27, 2007
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A Foreigner in a Thai Court

When I was younger, I once sat on the jury of a murder trial. It lasted for about seven days. I had always been fascinated by courtroom dramas and after watching “Twelve Angry Men” I fancied myself as Head Juror. Alas, I was only 19 at the time and no-one voted me for that position. Although…

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