Thai vendor of rubber duck calendar found guilty of royal defamation

A Thai seller of a rubber ducky calendar has been found responsible of royal defamation. The 26 yr old man, “Tonmai,” was arrested on December 31, 2020, and charged with royal defamation. Now, he’ll serve two years in jail after being found guilty.
The Taling Chan Criminal Court dominated that the depiction of the rubber duck was a mockery of Thailand’s Head of State. According to Prachatai English, the rubber geese first arrived at pro-democracy demonstrations back in 2020.
The yellow duck turned a logo of resistance after protesters used the large inflatables to dam water cannon blasts. Protesters nicknamed the yellow geese “the navy.” The ducks were given pseudo-royal titles by protesters.
Police performed a sting operation, posing as a potential buyer of the calendar on Facebook and asking for it to be delivered by a Grab driver. Officers then tracked the location till they discovered Tonmai’s residence and requested a search warrant.
They found the calendar and arrested him as a outcome of the calendar mocks the Head of State. During Ultimate , Tonmai stated the calendar did not point out the Head of State or different royal family members. He also says he didn’t produce the calendars, but only delivered them.
A Thammasat University lecturer stood up for Tonmai by saying that the parody doesn’t constitute an offence under the royal defamation legislation, for the reason that law specifically refers to risk and defamation.
An activist also agreed with Tonmai’s defence by saying that the language used in the calendar has also been used in fiction when appropriate for a character’s status. During the cross-examination of a Metropolitan Police officer, he noted that he also thinks that the duck doesn’t characterize the Head of State.
But, one other lecturer at Chulalongkorn University’s Faculty of Political Science, testified as an skilled witness for the prosecution. He says he sees the duck as representing the Head of State with the calendar that means to indicate that the Head of State makes use of taxpayer cash for his sexual achieve, is above government, judicial, and legislative powers and controls the navy.
He commented on March on the calendar, during which he says he saw the duck with a condom on top of its head. He says he took it to mean that the Head of State is obsessive about intercourse or that he’s selling the usage of protection.
However, under cross-examination, the lecturer mentioned that he agreed the duck represented many roles and that the picture of a duck flying with a aircraft titled, “Super VIP” couldn’t be taken as a reference to the Head of State..

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