Authorities are dramatically ramping up the use of the law against royal insults, which can result in a sentence of as many as 15 years in prison. Dozens of activists who participated in the demonstrations were facing royal defamation prosecutions, drawing criticism from United Nations rights experts. Arnon and Parit Chiwarak, the author of the 10 demands, have been arrested and released several times since mid-2020 on various charges. They and about a dozen other leaders charged with royal defamation were detained for weeks before being granted bail. Prayuth has questioned the movement’s funding and legitimacy, but said police wouldn’t use force against peaceful protesters. After several delays, the military-backed parliament in June approved a bill that would pave the way for a referendum on changing the constitution, as required before any overhaul. But for now, the lawmakers ignored the sweeping changes demanded by protesters in favor of a minor change to the election rules that would benefit big parties, including the one that backs Prayuth.