Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Mother cries foul on prison term

Mother cries foul on prison term

Mother cries foul on prison term

The mother of a convict who is still being held in prison despite completing his term at Banteay Meanchey provincial prison last week said yesterday court officials solicited a bribe when she sought to have him released.

Noeun Saran, 27, was convicted in November last year of breach of trust for taking money from villagers seeking jobs abroad with the recruitment firm TNT, a company whose management fled into hiding shortly before officials raided the operation.

When police arrived on November 23 Saran was the only person left at the establishment and he was given a one-year jail term that ended on November 20.

Saran’s mother, Meas Bin, 58, said, when she went to court this month to seek his release, she was told a court prosecutor had instead filed a complaint appeal against her son’s release and was asked to pay a bribe.

“I was asked how much money I had. I have no money, I am so poor. I want the court to release my son,” she said.

Bin had travelled all the way from Chrey Bakk commune in Kampong Chhnang province’s Rolea Ba’ier district to bring her son home from prison.

Banteay Meanchey court officials could not be reached yesterday to answer Bin’s bribery allegation.

Deputy president of the Banteay Meanchey prison Sing Sareth said court officials made a decision to continue to detain Saran on November 14 because they had discovered he had been involved in other criminal activities.

“The convict is currently being detained in prison,” she confirmed, but declined to comment in any more detail.

Adhoc provincial co-ordinator Sum Chankea said his team had received details of Saran’s detention but his organisation had previously intervened to secure the release of inmates at Banteay Meanchey prison held past their sentence and had been promised this practice had been outlawed.

June’s annual prison briefing paper from rights group

Licadho found Cambodian prisons were at 170 per cent capacity this year, exacerbated by the unofficial practice of court staff being “too busy” to swiftly process inmates’ release paperwork.  

Licadho said it had documented numerous instances in which prisoners were held past the end of their sentence due to missing or late paperwork, a practice they found was often used as code for court officials to request bribes.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lieng Sarith at [email protected]

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all