Thai police arrest 12 for sharing Facebook rape allegation

BANGKOK (AP) - Police in Thailand have arrested 12 people who shared a Facebook post about a British tourist's allegation that police had refused to accept her rape complaint.

A lawyer for the 12 Thai men said Thursday they were arrested in several different provinces this week on charges of violating the Computer Crime Act. They could face up to five years in prison and fines if convicted of spreading false information and damaging national security.

Police deny turning away the British woman and say their investigation determined that her claim of being raped on the island of Koh Tao in June was untrue.

The Computer Crime Act has been used to prosecute people for posting about the country's monarchy or political issues but rarely for purely criminal cases.