What's happening today - Shin Corporation lawsuit hearing - October 11, 2004
Today is the first hearing of a civil suit by the Shin
Corporation against Supinya Klangnarong, secretary-general
of the Campaign for Popular Media Reform along with the
owner and editors of Thai Post. The suit seeks
compensation of about 400 million baht for "adverse
publicity" that supposedly resulted from an interview
with Supinya that was published in Thai Post.
stated that the profits of Shin Corporation, founded by
the Prime Minister and now owned by his family, have soared
since the Prime Minister's Thai Rak Thai party came to
power. Besides the civil suit, the defendants are also
facing a criminal defamation suit that threatens them
with lengthy prison sentences.
This legal action by the Shin Corporation will be widely
watched as it has seen as creating a possible precedent
that a ruling party and its top personalities could be
immune from media oversight, much like they are in Malaysia,
Singapore and other countries dominated by one political
faction. It is likely that next hearing will be delayed
until well after the next election to deflect further
discussion of the case.