AIS unlawfully reveals private user info: anti-junta activist

An anti-junta activist has accused AIS, one of Thailand’s biggest mobile phone service providers, of unlawfully revealing private information about him.

Piyarat ‘Toto’ Chongthep, an anti-junta activist, told the media during his trial on 14 June 2017 at Prakhanong Provincial Court in Bangkok that AIS illegally gave private information about him to the authorities.

He said that during the trial, an AIS staff member who was called to testify revealed information about his whereabouts and of two other accused, including mobile banking information before and after 7 August 2016.

He said that such private information was obtained unlawfully without a court order because the phone company merely received a letter from the police asking for cooperation on the case.   

He added that the private information revealed is not relevant to the case.

Piyarat was detained on 7 August 2016 after he tore up his referendum ballot paper at a polling station before shouting the slogan “dictatorship shall be ruined and democracy shall triumph”.

He was indicted of violating Articles 59 and 60 of the controversial Public Referendum Act and Articles 188 and 358 of the Criminal Code.

Two other suspects, Jirawat Aekakkaranuwat and Thongtham Kaewpanpruek, were accused of violating Article 60 of the Public Referendum Act for recording a video clip of Piyarat as he tore up his ballot paper and posting it on Facebook.

Piyarat is the head of the For Friends Association (FFA), which provides assistance to political prisoners and dissidents.

Under Article 59 of the Public Referendum Act, people who tear up referendum ballot papers can be imprisoned for one year and fined up to 20,000 baht.

Piyarat Chongthep at the polling station where he tore up his ballot paper  (Photo from Khaosod)