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Kiwi appeals jail term

The Court of Appeal yesterday considered a request to reduce the punishment given to a 67-year-old New Zealander sentenced to 20 years imprisonment for raping five teenage girls.

Graham Robert Cleghorn, a former Siem Reap bar owner, was found guilty in 2004 of raping five former employees aged between 14 and 19.

In June last year, the Supreme Court ordered that the case be reconsidered in light of new penal codes. “The old laws required the suspect to spend 10 to 20 years in prison, but the new laws require the suspect to be in prison seven-15 years,” said Pol Som Oeun, director of the Appeal Court Council.

Cleghorn – who maintains his innocence – asked the court to reconsider given that he has lung cancer and has already served 10 years and 6 months.

“I want to die in my home town. I do not have money, so I pick up tin cans for selling in order to get money to pay for medicine. I ask for a reduced punishment since I know that I have only one more year,” he said. A verdict is expected on May 7.

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