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Andy Hall (activist)

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Name  Andy Hall

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Andrew Jonathan Hall (born 30 October 1979 in Spalding, Lincolnshire, England) is a migration rights activists formerly based in South East Asia.

Contents

In early 2013 Hall was sued by Natural Fruit Company following the publication of the Finnwatch report "Cheap Has a High Price". Hall claimed to have interviewed workers for the report, some of whom were undocumented migrants and reported poor working conditions, unlawfully low wages, confiscation of official documents, use of child labour and excessive overtime. Altogether Natural Fruit has brought four cases against Hall, for alleged defamation and computer crimes. Several human rights organisations and trade unions have condemned Natural Fruit's actions as judicial harassment and an attempt to silence a human rights defender, and called for the cases to be dropped.

At Hall's July 2016 trial, Finnwatch testified that the report alleging human rights abuses by Natural Fruit Co was analysed, written, and published by NGO Finnwatch, not by Hall, who was hired merely as a local investigator. However, Hall is explicitly identified in the preface to the report as the leader of the Finnwatch investigation in Thailand and the author of the Thailand section of the report.

Lawsuits

Of the four lawsuits against Mr Hall, one has been ruled in his favour. On 18 September 2015, the Appeals Court ruled in favour of Mr Hall on the charge of defamation. The remaining three cases, including a criminal case, involve charges related to computer crime and defamation. If found guilty, Hall may face up to seven years in prison.

On 20 September 2016 Hall was found guilty of criminal defamation and violation of Thailand's Computer Crimes Act. The court sentenced Hall to prison for four years and ordered him to pay a 150,000 baht fine. His prison sentence was reduced to three years and suspended for two years because of his record as a human rights defender. Hall said he would appeal the ruling. The president of Natural Fruit, Wirat Piyapornpaiboon, commented on the ruling, saying, "No foreigner should think they have power above Thai sovereignty,..."

References

Andy Hall (activist) Wikipedia


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