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At least 30 Cambodian judges past retirement age

At least 30 judges and prosecutors, some of whom sit at the highest levels of the country’s judicial system, are older than the age at which civil servants must retire under Cambodian law, according to a document obtained by the Post yesterday.

The document, given to the Post by a lawyer from the Cambodian Bar Association who declined to be named, lists 24 judges and six prosecutors who exceed the mandated retirement age of 60.

They were all born between 1940 and 1952, according to the list.

While rights group are howling about the situation, one of the judges, Thong Ol, who was born in 1949 and is the president of Pursat Provincial Court, pointed out that the law permits serving beyond the retirement age “according to necessity”.

Phay Siphan, spokesman for the Council of Ministers, said Cambodia did not have enough judges and prosecutors, so the government could not force existing ones to retire.

“We still lack human resources in the judicial system,” Siphan said.

But Ny Chakrya, head of the monitoring section at rights group Adhoc, said allowing these judges and prosecutors to keep serving proved there was “injustice in the justice system”.

The judges come from courts in Phnom Penh, the provinces of Preah Sihanouk, Kampot, Pursat and Kampong Thom.

There are five each from the supreme and appeal courts.

To contact the reporter on this story: Meas Sokchea at sokchea.meas@phnompenhpost.com

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