Thai court operations to go online with e-court system

Thai courts will go online throughout the country with two courts � the Thonburi and Bangkok South civil courts � being selected for the launch of e-court system as a pilot project which will, among others, enable lawyers to file their lawsuits electronically.

Mr Thanarak Naowarat, a chief judge attached to the office of the Supreme Court president, told an audience at a seminar held at the Law Faculty of Thammasat University on Saturday that the Thai courts are developing by adopting new technology to speed up legal process for the convenience of members of the public.

He pointed out that banking transactions are mostly done electronically which means that banks have confidence in the online system that it is safe and, hence, the courts should follow suit, initially, with the launch of the online system at the Thonburi and Bangkok South civil courts.

He maintained that the online system will benefit the courts, the defendants and the prosecutors or the plaintiffs.

Mr Thanarak disclosed that the Office of the Electronic Transactions Committee of the Ministry of Digital for Economy and Society will provide counselling to the judiciary on the e-court project.

As a matter of fact, the chief judge noted that the courts have, to a limited extent, gone online by allowing lawyers and prosecutors in civil cases to query the witnesses electronically as well as submitting their cases electronically.

For the next stage, courtroom procedure will go online too with the installation of Big Data which means that, in the future, judges need not have to carry huge files with them to the courtroom and all they need is just a laptop or a thumb drive to be inserted into a desk-top computer or a laptop, said Mr Thanarak.

Also, the courtroom will be equipped with a sound and visual recorder which will enable the judges to have quick access to the testimony of any witness without having to rerun the tape from the start.

On top of that, video conference system will also be installed in courtrooms and all the court filings will be paperless.

Mr Satayapol Satjadecha, a special law lecturer at the Law Faculty, however, warned that the courts must make sure that their planned online operations must have effective cyber security to prevent its information from being hacked.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)