The international co-investigating judge at the Khmer Rouge tribunal has escalated his efforts to get government-opposed Case 004 suspect Im Chem to court by issuing an order to local authorities to bring her to the tribunal, a long-time court monitor has said.
Chem, who lives in the former Khmer Rouge stronghold of Anlong Veng in Oddar Meanchey province, has ignored several previous summonses to hear her charges read, said Long Panhavuth, a program officer at the Cambodian Justice Initiative.
As a result, Judge Mark Harmon, who is working on the case without the participation of his Cambodian counterpart, You Bunleng, issued an “order to bring” last week, Panhavuth said, citing court sources.
“It has been issued. I can confirm this.”
But given the government’s opposition to further cases, it’s unlikely authorities will comply with the order, he added.
Tribunal spokesman Lars Olsen said he could neither confirm nor deny the report yesterday, citing the confidentiality of the investigation.
Anlong Veng district police said they had not received any order from the tribunal.
“If we received the court [order], we would send her to the [tribunal],” deputy police chief Sou Nov said.
In August, Chem said her lawyer, Bit Seanglim, had informed her that she would soon be arrested. Chem said yesterday that she had not heard about a new court order and insisted, as she has all along, that she would not go willingly.
Seanglim declined to comment, as did Bunleng, the tribunal’s Cambodian co-investigating judge.
Harmon did not respond to a request for comment.
Additional reporting by Buth Reaksmey Kongkea, Chhay Channyda and May Titthara