Monday, December 14, 2015

Sustainability in Thailand and Green Buildings (Video)

Anyone with green interests will want to know about the new kind of sustainable buildings being built.

In this video, Green Building Consultant and Engineer Armelle Le Bihan explains why a new kind of environmentally friendly building should be the future.

Watch it here:

Thursday, November 19, 2015

VIDEO: NGO’s in Thailand

The latest video offering from ThaiLawForum is a must watch for anyone who has ever wondered what it might be like to run a successful NGO in Thailand.

US born Dwight Turner founded In Search of Sanuk, a charity that helps needy children and refugee families.

Word of what Dwight has been up to has spread, and he has even been featured in the Bangkok Post.

Learn more here:

NGO lawyers Chaninat and Leeds are experts in Thai NGO law.

Friday, November 13, 2015

FATCA 101 for US Expats – Important!

If you are a US citizen living overseas, then you will most likely have heard of FATCA… or so we thought. According to this new video from ThaiLawForum featuring Douglas Goldstein, not all Americans are aware of something that has the potential to cost them hundreds of thousands of dollars if they are not compliant.

Get yourself clued up here:

Thursday, October 29, 2015

VIDEO: Why Are Americans Renouncing their Citizenship?

This week team Chaninat and Leeds met with financial expert Lon Fairbrook of Fairbrook Alliance, to discuss the pros and cons of renouncing US citizenship - something that is being done in increasing numbers.

According to Lon, the reasons are primarily tax driven. It's something we advise going into with only with great caution and thorough research.

Chaninat and Leeds: American lawyers in Bangkok Chaninat and Leeds have a team of highly qualified lawyers fluent in both English and Thai

Watch our interview here.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Mugabe Awarded Human Rights Prize from China

In a moment that makes you realize that truth really is stranger than fiction, reports have emerged that Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s notoriously oppressive and tyrannical leader, has been awarded a human rights prize from China.

As legal blogger Jonathan Turley writes, the Confucius Peace Prize, China’s answer to the Nobel Peace Prize, has this year been awarded to President Mugabe. In previous years the award has gone to Vladimir Putin and Fidel Castro.

The award committee announced:

“Ever since Robert Mugabe was sworn in as the president of Zimbabwe in the 1980s, he has worked hard to bring political and economic order to the country and to improve the welfare of the Zimbabwean people by overcoming hardship.”

In similar news, UK officials have been warned not to bring up human rights during President Xi Jinping’s state visit. If they do so, this will be viewed as a hostile act.

NGO attorneys in Bangkok Chaninat and Leeds are experts and registering non-profits in Thailand.

As Jonathan Turley comments:

“The Chinese clearly do not want their leader’s visit to be spoiled by mention of the fact that he is the head of an authoritarian and hypocritical regime. Why spoil a perfectly good visit with references to the systemic denial of political and religious rights?”

There have been numerous reports of significant human rights violations in China of late. The scandal of the Falun Gong for example, sent ripples of shock around the world with the news that thousands of practitioners of the Falun Gong faith have been murdered in order to harvest their organs.

Read more here.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Thailand Police Crackdown on Companies Using Pirated Software

Given that Thailand is regularly referred to as 'Land of Fakes', it comes as no surprise that the general attitude of many Thai people is that using pirated goods is no big deal.

But now, many companies using pirated software have come face to face with a nasty shock, with Thai police's Economic Crime Suppression Division (ECSD) performing raids on those they suspect of using pirated software.

Beware of the pirates! Image Credit: Nicholas Raymond (Flickr)
The ECSD is now prosecuting over 150 businesses for using the illegitamate software.

It's thought that some firms may be unaware that the software they are using is pirated, unfortunately ignorance does not save them from the strong hand of the law.

Business lawyers in Thailand Chaninat and Leeds have decades of experience helping companies succeed in Thailand.

They face fines of between 20,000 - 200,000 baht for violating Section 69 of Thailand's Copyright Act.

It is in a company's best interests to use legitamate software. Pirated versions frequently have privacy gaps that make them vulnerable to hacks and information leaks which can be used by anyone wanting to exploit them.

For more on this story see here. 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Indian Princess' Millions Ruled in Supreme Court

A well-loved Indian aristocrat's millions have been embroiled in a lengthy legal battle since her 2009 death, this week the Supreme Court in New Delhi ruled in favor of her grandchildren.

Image Credit: Ramesh Thakhur (Flickr)
As Indian Express reports, Gayatri Devi's will stated that her assets were to go to her grandchildren Devraj Singh and Lalitya Kumari, however her other step children came forward claiming they were rightful heirs too.

Gayatri Devi, also known as Maharani of Jaipur, was a celebrated beauty who lived in palaces, traveled the world in private jets and wined and dined with world leaders. 

Her glamorous lifestyle was part of the system of "princely states" that was largely dismantled following India's independence from Britain in 1947, however parts of the Jaipur estate remain intact. 

Her assets are thought to be worth between $200,000 and $400,000.  Her fortune as well as two Jaipur palaces have been involved in the "acrimonious showdown" between her grandchildren and stepchildren.   

The Indian Supreme Court ruled that her will was "beyond any dispute."

“beyond any dispute”
“beyond any dispute”
“beyond any dispute”
See the full story here.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Secret Brothel Uncovered in Cambodian Coffee Shop

A raid at a Phnom Penh coffee shop has uncovered a lot more than a few lacklustre cappuccino's. 

The couple running the coffee shop are allegedly offering prostitution services at the site in the Cambodian capital’s Meanchey district, reports Phnom PenhPost.  The couple were charged on Monday at Phnom Penh Municipal Court on the alleged charges.

Credit: waferboard (Flickr)
The couple are thought to have worked as pimps for six prostitutes, with one as young as 17.

The suspects are Duong Lim, 60, and his wife, Pham Thi Hieng, 38, both Vietnamese nationals.  

Major Sok Kimsreng, an officer with the Ministry of Interior’s anti-human trafficking police said: 

  “They allowed girls who worked in their coffee shop to have sex with their clients in exchange for getting a commission from them […] If found guilty, they will be punished with up to five years’ imprisonment each.” 


Divorce attorneys in Thailand Chaninat and Leeds are experts in successfully arranging divorces on behalf of their clients.

  The couple were arrested following a raid of the coffee shop, and the six sex workers were sent to a municipal rehabilitation center. 

Read more on this story here.

Prostitution has been a much debated topic in recent weeks, due to Amnesty International’s vote in favor of decriminalizing the sex industry.  The decision caused fury among many, but those in favor of the vote say it will work to protect the rights of women who work in the much stigmatized sex trade.The Amnesty vote is not a law in itself, but the organizations sway may influence governments to share their opinion, eventually leading to changes in legislation.

Related: Sex andprostitution laws in Thailand.

Tougher Stance on Child Porn Laws in Thailand

Harsher punishments will come into effect this December for anyone found in possession of child pornography, the Bangkok Post has reported.

A section of the Thai Criminal Code regarding the possession, distribution and any gain from such activity has been amended.  The amendment in law will be enforced in December.

Credit: (Flickr)
 Longer prison terms and hefty fines will be given to anyone possessing or distributing pornographic materials of children and minors under the age of 18.

This comes following Thailand’s signing of the International Convention on Children's Rights. 

Anyone found in possession of visual images, whether static or in motion, depicting acts if a sexual nature involving minors will be considered an offender.

Those found in possession  will face up to five years behind bars and a maximum fine of 100,000 baht ($2,774.) 

Anyone distributing the materials, including forwarding images on the smartphone app 'Line' may get a jail term of seven years and a fine up to 140,000 baht. 

For more on this story, see here and here.