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Thailand 3 March 2009

Leading Swiss TV reporter arrested, then forbidden to leave country

Christoph Müller, a leading Swiss TV reporter and producer, was handcuffed and arrested on arrival in Thailand on 27 February. He was freed on bail 24 hours later but the police confiscated his passport and he is forbidden to leave the country until further notice.

His employer, the German-language Swiss TV station SF, has described the measures as a “judicial farce” and out of all proportion to his apparent offence.

The authorities have not told Müller exactly why he was arrested but it appears to have the result of a 2006 complaint about a report by Müller in 2002 about a bogus Swiss doctor based in Thailand who was raising funds for a suspect charity.

Reporters Without Borders calls on the Thai authorities to immediately rescind the order banning him from leaving the country and to return his passport.

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