Mr Head appeared in Phuket Provincial Court yesterday (Aug 23) for the start of a criminal defamation trial brought by a lawyer who featured in an investigation about foreigners being scammed of their retirement homes.
The prosecution was sparked by a 2015 report by Mr Head detailing how two foreign retirees had Phuket properties stolen from them by a network of criminals and corrupt officials.
One of the victims, British national Ian Rance, is a joint defendant in the prosecution.
Both Mr Head and Mr Rance pleaded not guilty.
However, Mr Head also faced an additional charge under the Criminal Crimes Act, which could have incurred a penalty of up to five years in jail.
“The plaintiff has withdrawn his case against BBC journalist Jonathan Head, but as the trial of his co-defendant is continuing, we cannot comment further at present,” a BBC statement said. (See story here.)
Mr Head posted the news on his own Twitter account, saying, “All charges against me in Phuket defamation case have now been dropped. Great relief for me but case against codefendant Ian Rance continues.”
“Many thanks for tremendous support and interest in my defamation case, now dropped. As case against Ian Rance I can't say more now,” he added in another post. (See here.)