Bangkok hospital bomber who hated junta jailed for 27 years


BANGKOK: A Thai court on Wednesday jailed a former engineer for 27 years for planting a pipe bomb in an army-run hospital, a rare violent kickback against the junta which has ruled for over three years. At least 21 people were injured when the nail-filled device detonated in the waiting room of King Mongkut hospital in Bangkok on May 22. The date was the third anniversary of a coup that ousted the civilian government of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra in 2014. After his arrest Wattana Phumret, 62, confessed to planting the device in a vase due to what he has said was his “hatred for governments that come from military coups.” The court ruling said the evidence “proved without doubt” the suspect’s guilt on several charges including attempted murder, but he avoided a life sentence due to his confession. Politically febrile Thailand has a history of gun and bomb attacks, often on anniversaries of military crackdowns and coups. But Wattana’s apparent lone wolf plot was a rare display of revolt against the current military regime, which has successfully corralled its critics and consolidated its power.



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