Thai court orders British man to pay £226k to Natural Fruit

Photo credit from facebook Andy Hall

A COURT in the Thai capital has ordered a British labour rights activist to pay 10 million baht (£226,000) in damages.

The ruling in Bangkok against Andy Hall is in favour of a company which filed a civil defamation suit after he helped expose alleged human rights violations at its factory.

It is just the latest development involving one of four defamation suits filed by pineapple canning company Natural Fruit, which employed migrant Burmese workers who claimed the company had broken labour regulations in abusing them.

More – Prominent UK rights activist leaves Thailand in fear ‘corrupt, mafia system’

Hall has prevailed in one of the two criminal defamation suits against him, while the other is pending, as is another civil suit. He has also filed a counter-suit against Natural Fruit.

Hall left Thailand in 2016, citing intolerable legal harassment after another company, poultry producer Thammakaset Farm, sued him.

His legal troubles stem from a 2013 report he researched for the Finnish consumer organisation Finnwatch, alleging abuses at Natural Fruit’s facilities.

They also concern an interview that he gave to Al-Jazeera on the subject, which was the focus of yesterday’s ruling. Natural Fruit claimed that the report Hall helped research and his interview comments hurt their business.

Hall still works on labour rights issues concerning migrants in Thailand.

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