12,000 inmates to be released under royal pardon this year

December 4, 2011

Corrections Department director-general Pol Col Suchart Wongananchai said that over 20,000 inmates would benefit from the royal pardon decree. About 12,000 prisoners will be immediately released on Dec 8 under the decree while over 10,000 convicts will receive reduced punishment. The ceremony to release inmates will be officially carried out nationwide, while the main venue, to be presided over by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will be held at Bangkok’s Klong Prem Central Prison.

The new reduced punishment period to be applied to over 10,000 prisoners will be completed within 90 days.  Under the 2011 royal pardon decree, inmates eligible to be granted a royal pardon must currently be detained by authorities or imprisoned in places stipulated by courts or authorities. Inmates convicted in drug cases with jail terms of less than eight years are also eligible under the royal pardon.

Regarding early speculation by some parties that the draft royal decree would also benefit ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra, elder brother of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, the chief of the corrections department told Agence France-Presse (AFP) on Sunday that Mr Thaksin will not qualify, as in previous years, royal pardon only apply to persons who have carried out part of their sentence in prison.

Download full announcement in the Royal Gazette (Thai) >>

Source: MCOT online news

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