Thailand has pardoned a Thai-born American who was sentenced last year to 2 1/2 years in prison for insulting the monarchy, his lawyer said Wednesday.
Joe W. Gordon, whose Thai name is Lerpong Wichaicommart, was released Tuesday after receiving a royal pardon from the king, his lawyer said.
Gordon's case is one of several that provoked criticism from human rights advocates over Thailand's controversial laws that punish defaming, insulting or threatening the royal family. U.S. authorities had also expressed concern about his imprisonment.
The charge of writing and posting articles insulting the monarchy under the Southeast Asian country's lese majeste laws can yield a sentence as high as 20 years in prison in the Buddhist country, where the king is highly revered.FULL STORY