A cat was arrested, booked and had its mugshot taken by Thai police after it was caught breaking the nationwide curfew put in place over coronavirus fears.
Curfew is serious business in Thailand, and police forces across the length and breadth of this southeast Asian nation are on the alert for violators. It's not like they have much choice in the matter. Authorities who fail to strictly enforce the 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. nationwide curfew imposed by the Thai government on April 3rd could be charged with neglect of duty in violation of Section 157 of the Criminal Code.
The curfew law would appear to be fairly straightforward: don't be caught outside between the hours of 10pm and 4am. That said, it didn't take long for curfew-breakers to be caught, charged and penalized. Indeed, the wheels of Thai justice can move with surprisingly speed: on April 5th, a quartet of scofflaws in the town of Chai Nat were sentenced to 15 days in jail and fined 15,000 baht (about $460) each by the provincial court.
If that don't get the message across, what will? Never doubt the ability of the Thai policy to meet a challenge, my friends, and their way of raising awareness of the virus curfew was to make a curfew-busting arrest that was sure to go viral. Yeah, you guessed it, they arrested a cat.
As posted on the TCNN (Thai Chicken Noodle News?) Facebook account and by Japanese Twitterer @nisizawa, the cat was picked up, brought to the station house and – to its everlasting shame – fitted with a cat-sized sandwich board which read “I left my home after 10pm in violation of the curfew.” Can you believe that? We can't either... everyone knows cats are incapable of feeling shame.