Over at the Thai Visa forum they recently shut down a discussion with this abrupt directive:

Due to the danger to Thaivisa this topic is closed as the previous topics of this nature. Admin’s decision and a correct one.

While this does happen from time-to-time it isn’t an everyday event. So…why were they so concerned?

Here are some thoughts:

Anyone who reads the Thai Visa thread will see that it has something to do with Police Lt-Col Watanasak Mungkijkarndee and a long-term resident of Thailand named Akbar Khan. And lèse majesté. The whole episode is intriguing and not just because Akbar Khan is reportedly a British citizen. To fill in some of the gaps, Bangkok Pundit has the full text of a recent Bangkok Post article about these two, and their involvement in the lèse majesté allegations against former Thai government minister Jakrapob Penkair. They are, in the Pundit’s words, “The Lese Majeste Team”.

Does anyone know what else is going on here? It does seem like it would be good to have a fuller discussion of the role of these two individuals in the case against Jakrapob, and also the complaint against the BBC’s Jonathan Head. Interested people around the world will want to know how two apparently unexceptional individuals can be so instrumental in the downfall of a political bigwig.

Are they really lone rangers? Have these guys taken on some kind of Team Thailand – Patronage Police role? Or is their involvement completely overstated? In particular, how important is the non-Thai Akbar Khan in this episode? The Bangkok Post makes it sound like he took the initiative on the Jakrapob speech. Is that how it happened? Or is there an unreported story that makes more sense?

And according to his LinkedIn profile, Akbar Khan is a member of the Foreign Correspondent’s Club of Thailand.

I’m sure many New Mandala readers want to know more.