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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tycoon’s wife fails in bid for freedom

Tycoon’s wife fails in bid for freedom

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Seng Chenda (right) appears at the Appeal Court in Phnom Penh last week.

A defence lawyer acting for the wife of tycoon Khaou Chuly yesterday slammed a high-profile Appeal Court decision to uphold her conviction for attempted murder as having “no transparency”.

Seng Chenda’s appeal against her 20-year jail sentence failed on Friday.

Along with three accomplices, the 46-year-old had been found guilty of plotting to murder Sun Sotha – Khaou Chuly’s daughter from a previous marriage – at Phnom Penh Municipal Court in February.
During her appeal, it was alleged that she was innocent.

Her maid Chan Sokha, who is also serving 18 years for attempted murder, claimed at court that she had overheard discussions between Khaou Chuly and his son about a murder plot – an accusation he strongly denied.

Deputy Prosecutor of the Court of Appeal Ngeth Sarath confirmed yesterday that all the guilty verdicts had been upheld during a hearing last Friday.

“The Court of Appeal has upheld the Phnom Penh Municipal Court’s convictions on Seng Chenda and her three associates. They were convicted from 18 to 20 years in jail each,” he said.

A lawyer acting on behalf of Sun Sotha yesterday said the decision was “justice for my client”, adding that he had strong evidence against the tycoon’s wife and her associates to take to a possible appeal at the Supreme Court.

But Lim Vann, a defence lawyer for Seng Chenda, still asserted her innocence stating: “I think that the decision has no transparency and has not provided justice for my client.”

Seng Chenda and Oknha Khaou Chuly could not be contacted by the Post for comment yesterday.

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