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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Unionist murder hearing postponed

Unionist murder hearing postponed

The Appeal Court on Tuesday postponed a scheduled session that would have begun the process of re-hearing all the evidence in the controversial trial of Born Samnang and Sok Sam Oeun, the two men found guilty of murdering union leader Chea Vichea in 2004.

One of the victims' lawyers was too busy to attend the session, prompting the president of the Appeal Court, Chuon Sunleng, to postpone the hearing, he said.

"We have not scheduled a specific time for the next hearing, but it will be before the end of next month," Chun Sunleng added.

Controversial trial

The pair was found guilty following an investigation and trial widely condemned by Cambodian and international rights groups who cited inconsistent evidence and said torture had been used to extract confessions.

Born Samnang and Sok Sam Oeun were released on bail by the Supreme Court on December 31 after serving almost five years of a 20-year prison sentence for the daylight shooting of the popular Free Trade Union president.

"[The delay] is nothing to worry about, as the pair have been released on bail," Sok Sam Oeun's defence lawyer Hong Kimsuon, of the Cambodian Defenders Project, told the Post Tuesday.  

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