By Christopher B. Daly
This episode of press intimidation in Thailand — where a journalist was sentenced to 10+ years in prison for insulting the king — may seem like a throwback to journalists in many countries. His crime: Lèse majesté, which to say: an injury to the majesty of the ruler.
But don’t get too smug too fast. There are similar laws against dissing the king in the following places:
1 Current lese-majesty laws in Europe
2 Current lese-majesty laws in the Middle East
3 Current lese-majesty laws elsewhere
Lese-majesty is an old legal doctrine, which once ruled the British publishing world, including the original publishing efforts that developed into the American press.