A 77-year-old retired schoolteacher in Thailand has been arrested on sedition charges for giving flowers to an anti-military protester earlier this year.

A lawyer for Preecha Kaewbanpaew said Tuesday his client gave flowers to, and briefly walked with, one of three demonstrators who staged a peaceful protest in March against the use of military courts to try civilians. The practice, mainly for political offenses, began last year after the army overthrew an elected civilian government.

The broadly defined sedition law provides for up to seven years in prison for inciting unrest. Preecha was arrested Sunday and released on bail Monday.

Thailand's ruling junta has clamped down on dissent, saying it is restoring order after almost a decade of sometimes violent domestic political conflict.