Yuyee's drug case unlikely to be revived

Ex-model's request for bail denied

Former actress and model Chatchaya Cuesta Ramos, better known as Yuyee, who is serving a 15-year sentence for cocaine smuggling. (Bangkok Post file photo)

The Justice Ministry is unlikely to revive the case of former actress and model Chatchaya Cuesta Ramos, better known as Yuyee, who is serving a 15-year sentence for smuggling cocaine into the country, despite the online campaign initiated by her Spanish celebrity husband.

Deputy permanent secretary for justice Thawatchai Thaikhiew said on Saturday that the case of Yuyee, 43, also known in Thailand as Alisa Inthusamit, is unlikely to meet the criteria for it to be considered again.

Last week the Supreme Court rejected a request for bail by the imprisoned model, ending the opportunity for Yuyee to fight her sentence.

The Court of First Instance and Appeal Court previously ordered her to serve 15 years and three months and imposed a fine of 1.5 million baht for smuggling cocaine and wildlife into the country in 2012.

Mr Thawatchai said her relatives can file a petition to the Justice Ministry to help Yuyee, but he was doubtful whether her case would be revived.

He said only in cases of perjury, false evidence or new evidence would she have a chance of having her case reviewed.

"Ms Alisa's case does not fit any of the three," he said.

"The court has considered all aspects before making its decision. Since the defendant does not plead guilty, the court cannot reduce her punishment.

Yuyee's husband Francisco Ramos, a Spanish TV presenter, has said she was framed by an influential person.

Mr Ramos has also carried out the 'freeyuyee' campaign online to urge the Thai court to revive her case.

Thailand's narcotics law imposes harsh penalties against violators. Article 68 of the law states that people who import or export morphine are subject to imprisonment of 20 years to life.

On Nov 10, 2012, Yuyee was arrested for possessing 251 milligrams of cocaine, a Type 2 narcotic, on arrival from Vietnam at Bangkok's Don Mueang airport.

The Court of First Instance ruled on June 12, 2014, to jail her for 15 years, a reduction from 20 years.

A prison term of three months earlier handed down in a separate case by the Min Buri Court, which convicted her of smuggling protected wildlife into the country, was added to the sentence.

In September 2015, the appeal court upheld the lower court's verdict.

Both courts rejected the former actress's requests for bail, deeming her a flight risk. On Wednesday the Supreme Court also denied her release on bail.

She was taken back to the Central Women's Correctional Institution in Bangkok's Bang Khen district. So far, she has spent two years and nine months in jail.


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