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Pheu Thai case against Suthep thrown out

The Constitutional Court yesterday rejected a request by the Pheu Thai Party that Suthep Thaugsuban and 10 other protest leaders be charged with staging their protest with the aim of toppling the democratic system of government.

The court said the case was inadmissible, as the protesters had exercised their constitutional right to protest against the government - initially, against the amnesty bill - and to express their mistrust of the administration.

The Pheu Thai Party had asked the court to rule on whether the antigovernment protest calling on the Yingluck Shinawatra government to step down and hand power to an unelected government to reform the country was in violation of Article 68 of the Constitution. The Association of Constitution for Society had also asked the court to rule on whether the disruption of the election by the antigovernment protesters was also in violation of Article 68.

The court said Suthep and his group might have committed many other violations, such as breaking criminal laws, but said it was the responsibility of agencies under the justice system to charge them under the relevant laws. There were no grounds to rule that the protesters violated Article 68 of the Constitution by attempting to overthrow the democratic system of government or acquire the power to rule the country through unconstitutional means, the court said.


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