BANGKOK (AP) — A Bangkok court has acquitted the founder of Thailand’s Yellow Shirt political movement of insulting the monarchy by quoting remarks defaming the royal family.

Sondhi Limthongkul

Sondhi Limthongkul. Pic: AP.

The court ruled Wednesday that publisher Sondhi Limthongkul had no intention of defaming the king and queen by repeating critical remarks.

It said Sondhi quoted from a 2008 speech by activist Darunee Charnchoengsilpakul to call for her arrest. She is serving a 15-year prison term for lese majeste.

Critics of the law say it is unfair because charges can be instigated by anyone with a grudge, and bail is often denied. Sondhi’s opponents say the courts have shown favoritism toward him because they support the royalist Yellow Shirts, but give harsh treatment to their political rivals, supporters of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra called Red Shirts.

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