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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Thai man’s trial for espionage set to begin

Thai man’s trial for espionage set to begin

THE Thai national accused of espionage for leaking the flight schedule of fugitive former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra to the Thai embassy last month is scheduled to stand trial today at Phnom Penh Municipal Court.

Thirty-one-year-old Sivarak Chutipong, an employee of Thai-owned Cambodia Air Traffic Services, was arrested on November 12, in the midst of Thaksin’s controversial visit to the Kingdom. He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted of breaching national security under Article 19 of the 2005 Law on Archives.

Various Thai news outlets have reported that Thai opposition leaders may attempt to intervene on Sivarak’s behalf, with the Thai News Agency reporting that both Thaksin and opposition Puea Thai party Chairman Chavalit Yongchaiyudh are prepared to offer assistance, according to Puea Thai spokesman Prompong Nopparit.

Sivarak’s newly appointed lawyer, Khieu Sambo, will likely seek a Royal pardon in the event of a guilty verdict, Prompong added.

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