Statement by Angkhana Neelapaijit
29 December 2015
Supreme Court dismissed the charges against five police officers in relation to the abduction of Somchai Neelapaijit and dismissed the request of Somchai ‘s family to be co-plaintiff.
On 29 Dec 2015, at 9:30, the Bangkok Criminal Court read the Supreme Court’s verdict dismissing the charges against five police officers in relation to the abduction and robbery of Somchai Neelapaijit. As a family member, I am sad and deeply disappointed at the judicial process in Thailand, especially the initial stage of investigation and the collection of all evidences conducted by police investigators. The Supreme Court ruled that the evidence collected are not reliable and there is no signal official verified the true copied of evidences that submitted to the court.
Today the Supreme Court has also set another precedent for Thai society denying family of the disappeared the legal right to take legal action on behalf of the missing person, on the basis that there is lack of evidence demonstrating the missing person is injured or dead and thus could not take legal action by him or herself.
Today, my family and I are back at square one, with no legal rights to seek justice for Somchai Neelaphaijit. This is the beginning of another journey for seeking truth and justice for all families affected by disappearances.
Once again, I affirmed that “if the judicial process could not bring back Somchai but the judicial process would not denied responsibility in returning justice for him.”
Today in the initial corner, I shall ask for those in this government who are responsible for the disappearance of Somchai: the Royal Thai Police Commission, Department of Special Investigation (DSI) and those who are involved in all judicial processes. I reaffirmed that disappearance is a crime against humanity, is not subject to a statue of limitation and the [victims’] family members have the right to truth and right to seek justice.
I am confident that if Somchai can see what is happening, he will have no regret and be proud of what his family has been doing together with our friends in calling for justice for all disappearances. We are creating mechanisms to protect all of us from this severe crime.
With our faith in humanity and human dignity