Thai law amended to protect children from sex predators

Thai law amended to protect children from sex predators

THE NATIONAL Legislative Assembly yesterday agreed to amend the law on pornographic media, introducing more protection for children's rights.

"We salute the NLA for giving importance to children's rights, who are most in need of protection," said Visa Benjamano, a member of the National Human Rights Commission.

On Thursday, 50 members of the NLA, led by Jintanun Chayasupamitre, proposed that the Criminal Code be amended, toughening the punishment for child pornography.

According to the amendment, those who produce pornographic images of minors under the age of 18 with the intent to sell locally or overseas will have to pay a fine of up to Bt140,000 and/or a prison term of up to seven years.

People found to be in possession of pornographic images of children under the age of 15 stand to be fined Bt100,000 and/or serve up to five years in prison.

People who possess pornographic images of youngsters between the ages of 15 and 18 will have to pay a fine of up to Bt30,000 and/or face a prison term of up to five years.

An informed source said the NLA hoped this amendment would stop Thailand from becoming a trading hub in child pornography.

This amendment would bring Thailand in line with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child that the Kingdom ratified in April 1992.

The UN convention lays the ground rules for the protection of children's rights, including physical safety, living conditions, freedom and welfare.

The convention also focuses on human trafficking and child pornography.

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