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Extortion charges for journalists

The lawyer for three journalists arrested for allegedly attempting to extort military police officers in Stung Treng province filed a request for bail yesterday to Stung Treng Provincial Court, which charged the trio on Wednesday.

According to defender Mao Sari, the bail request argues that journalists Kem Sovannarith, 41, Kim Khoeun, 28, and Mom Mun, 54, have “houses and jobs, and they also have an attorney”, and should be allowed to remain out of detention under court supervision.

“Procedurally, the judge needs to reply in five days, so we might get the information today or tomorrow” on whether the request was approved, he said. Stung Treng investigative judge Leng Vannrith declined to comment on the case.

Meanwhile, 10 journalists from around northeastern Cambodia will submit a petition today to rights group Adhoc and authorities in Ratanakkiri province – where the detained journalists are based – seeking their release, according to a journalist for Koh Santepheap.

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