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Hundreds to seek pardon from King

About 800 prisoners will be considered for Royal pardons or reduced sentences as part of Water Festival events, Such Sophan Nara, director of the Ministry of Justice’s penal department, said yesterday.

The prisoners come from 24 facilities, but the pardon lists "do not specify whether charges against them were serious”, Sophan Nara said.

Kouy Bunsorn, director of the ministry’s general department of prisons, said pardoning would occur during the Water Festival, which runs from November 5 to 7.

Prisoners granted pardons are meant to have served two-thirds of their sentences. Old age, illness and good behaviour are also taken into consideration.

But notable exceptions occur. In 2011, three foreign pedophiles were pardoned in one week, sparking outrage.

Separately, opposition leader Sam Rainsy, who has fled the country often to escape charges tinged by politics, was pardoned for the second time last year.

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