BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s Constitutional Court on Wednesday set July 17 as the next hearing date for a case seeking the dissolution of the popular opposition Move Forward party, which has 30% of the seats in the lower house of parliament.

The court’s president said this week there would be a verdict in the case before September.

The case against the party stems from an election commission petition to disband Move Forward over its campaign to amend the royal insult law, also known as lese majeste, which carries penalties of up to 15 years in jail for each perceived insult against the monarchy.

The decision follows a separate ruling by the Constitutional Court in January that said Move Forward’s campaign to change the royal insult law was a hidden effort to undermine the monarchy.

The court ordered the party to stop the campaign and did not call for any further punishment then.

The Move Forward party, which complied with the court’s earlier ruling, denied any wrongdoing and vowed to contest the Election Commission’s case in court.

Move Forward won the most votes in last year’s general election on an anti-establishment platform, but the party was blocked from forming a government by conservative lawmakers and senators allied with the royalist military.

The party continues to be popular among Thai voters, polling at 49.2% in a recent opinion survey of 2,000 people conducted by the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) last month.

The dissolution of Move Forward’s predecessor party, Future Forward, in 2020 over a campaign funding violation was among the factors that triggered massive anti-government street protests.

(Reporting by Chayut Setboonsarng, Panarat Thepgumpanat and Panu Woncha-um; Editing by Devjyot Ghoshal, Ed Davies)