The Supreme Court on Friday upheld the Appeals Court’s conviction ruling against red-shirt leader Arisman Pongruangrong and sentenced him to one year in jail for defaming former prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.
The Supreme Court convicted Arisman on two counts of defamation – for defaming Abhisit on October 11, 2009 and on October 17, 2009 – when he addressed red-shirt protesters at the Democracy Monument and in front of the Government House. The speeches were also broadcast on People Channel satellite TV.
The court gave Arisman a six-month jail term for each count and declined to commute the penalty on the ground that he had also defamed the Royal institution.
Arisman was not present to hear the ruling as he is serving a four-year jail term after the Appeals Court convicted him for invading the Royal Cliff Beach Hotel in Pattaya to block the Asean Summit.
Arisman’s lawyer Supachai Chaosuankluay told The Nation that his defence team are in the process of appealing against the ruling in the Royal Cliff Beach case.