Loi Krathong is one of the most prominent festival in Thailand. That is every year in november. Where people gather around at night and release candle floats into the water and these candles are called Krathong. Typically a Normal joyful festival but there an incident happened in Loi Krathong festival in 2019 and brought a copyright conflict.
The issue actually arose when there a 15 years old girl living in Nakhon Ratchasima province, was making Krathong and selling them online. She received an order of 136 Krathongs decorated with Japanese cartoon character through her social media. At the time of order delivery the who order was there with police and informed the seller girl that he is actually a copyright agent for a Thai company holding the copyright matters of Japanese cartoon character in Thailand.The girl was rushed to the police station, where the man demanded damages of THB 50,000 in exchange for not filing legal charges based on the alleged copyright infringement.
This case causes many legal issues regarding entrapment in copyright infringement matters and was being too much discussed in Thai news channels and social media.
Utilizing an appearance or test purchase of affirmed encroaching products, to accumulate proof to survey genuine infringement or to acquire insights regarding the infringer, is an acknowledged practice. The demonstration of entanglement, then again, happens when a law requirement specialist inappropriately prompts an individual to carry out a criminal offense.
In Supreme Court case Microsoft Corporation v. First Comp System Co., Ltd. et al., the plaintiff secured evidence of infringement by sending an investigator to purchase a personal computer, specifically asking for unlicensed software owned by the plaintiff to be installed, without being offered the software otherwise. The Supreme Court ruled that this method was a form of entrapment, because the plaintiff’s investigator chose to have the unlicensed software installed on the computer for the purpose of prosecuting the defendants. According to the Supreme Court in this case, the plaintiff caused the third defendant (i.e., the seller) to commit a criminal offense. As a result, the plaintiff could not be regarded as the victim party in this case.
In the krathong characters case, the girl argued that she normally produced flower-patterned krathong. The girl further asserted that, in this particular case, she agreed to the customer’s order for specifically designed krathong to be adorned with copyrighted cartoon characters. However, the man claiming to be an authorized representative argued that he did not lure the girl into the copyright violation, as the girl had previously posted on the Facebook page that she would be able to produce Krathong decorated with various patterns, including copyrighted cartoon characters.
The krathong characters case has indeed highlighted the need to draw the line between entrapment of an innocent person and investigation of a criminal by purchasing sample wares. Based on Thai Supreme Court rulings, a copyright infringer must be held liable for their offense, unless their action lacked free will and occurred as a direct result of the inducement. This principle is the basis for a strong but fair mechanism of copyright enforcement in Thailand.