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Probe 'will not interrupt KRT'

Content image - Phnom Penh Post

Criminal investigation into corruption at Khmer Rouge tribunal will not

interrupt Duch's trial, Municipal Court prosecutors say, despite legal

overlap.

Photo by:
AFP

Toul Sleng prison chief Duch at the Extrodinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia on Friday.

PROSECUTORS at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court claim that a criminal investigation into corruption at the Khmer Rouge tribunal will not interrupt the first trial at the court, that of Tuol Sleng prison chief Kaing Guek Eav, which is scheduled to begin in the middle of proposed investigations with judges and administrative staff.

Sok Kaliyan, deputy prosecutor at the Municipal Court, told the Post Tuesday that he expected investigations, which had already begun, to take a maximum of two months, after which a verdict could be given.

Despite the initial hearing for the torture chief's trial scheduled for February 17, Sok Kaliyan was confident investigations would not interrupt the highly anticipated first trial.  

"They are different things," he said.

International defence lawyers for former Khmer Rouge Brother No 2 Nuon Chea filed a criminal complaint to the civil court Friday, claiming Sean Visoth, the government's top official to the Khmer Rouge tribunal, as well as the court's former chief of personnel, Keo Thyvuth, violated criminal law by "perpetrating, facilitating, aiding and/or abetting an organised regime of institutional corruption at the ECCC during the pending judicial investigation".

The complaint also accused judges of misdemeanours, prompting Cambodian judges to make a statement denying the allegations.

Foreign lawyer summoned

Sok Kaliyan confirmed that one of the foreign legal adviser for Nuon Chea, consultant Andrew Ianuzzi, had already been summoned to the court and would appear on Thursday to be interviewed.

He said summoning the complainants was the first step in the inquiry, after which he would decide who else to summons.

"The complaint is divided into two parts - the first part relates to people working in the head of administration and the second relates to judges - so after I interview the complainants, I will decide who to interview from these [sections of the court]," he said.

Ianuzzi said Tuesday he was ready to be summoned to the court.

"We are looking forward to helping the court," he said. 

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