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Swedish Ex-Prisoner on Hunger Strike in Bangkok

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Nine years and eight months ago, Swedish Behnam “Benny” Moafi started serving a 22 year prison sentence in a Thai jail. He was convicted of extortion, blackmail, and armed robbery, but despite the court ruling he has always maintained his innocence. Even now that he is once again a free man, he is still looking for justice.

Became a lawyer in prison
One of the things, Benny did with his time in prison was studying, and he managed to get himself a law degree. Because of that, Benny is well aware of his rights and he knows that there is a law in Thailand that entitles people to have their cases re-tried. Every time he has made an attempt to do this, however, he has hit his head against a wall.

“They always tell me that they will look at my case again, but they never do. They never listen no matter how hard I try. I have a right to present my case again if there is new evidence, but they keep telling me that they can’t change the court’s decision” he says.

Hunger strike
After a while, most people might stop trying. They would accept and embrace their freedom, and leave Thailand. But not Benny. He wants justice, and today, wearing prison clothes and chains around his ankles, he started a hunger strike in front of the Government House in Bangkok.

“I’m doing this because I want to talk to the Prime Minister,” he says, and it seems like he is very determined to make that happen.


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