Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Activist’s case sent to lower court for retrial

Activist’s case sent to lower court for retrial

Areng activist Ven Vorn (right) is led into Koh Kong Provincial Court in February last year after he was charged with forestry crimes.
Areng activist Ven Vorn (right) is led into Koh Kong Provincial Court in February last year after he was charged with forestry crimes. LICADHO

Activist’s case sent to lower court for retrial

The Supreme Court yesterday sent back the case of Mother Nature activist Ven Vorn, who is contesting a one-year suspended sentence handed to him by a Koh Kong court, to the Appeal Court for a retrial citing irregularities.

Vorn was accused by Koh Kong’s Forestry Administration of allegedly harvesting forest products without permission and tampering with evidence. In March 2016, Vorn, who was also a ruling party commune councillor, was convicted and handed to a one-year suspended sentence.

The ruling was upheld by the Appeal Court in September.

“In the Ven Vorn case that the Appeal Court had tried in the past there were some wrong points. Therefore the Supreme Court decided to return the case to the Appeal Court for a retrial,” said Supreme Court Presiding Judge Kim Sathavy, declining to elaborate on the irregularities.

Vorn was not present in court and could not be reached for comment. Fellow Mother Nature activist Thun Ratha said it was difficult to gauge the higher court’s decision.

He said it could either be a ploy to lengthen legal hassles for Vorn by sending it back to the Appeal Court or could be a positive step in which the court would have to rectify mistakes he alleged it had made last year.

“We hope the Appeal Court will provide justice for him because he has not done anything wrong as charged by the Koh Kong court,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Ethnic group ‘disappointed’ to be denied French visas to attend court

    Eleven people at the centre of a case involving seven indigenous Bunong villages in Mondulkiri province pursuing legal action in France have expressed disappointment after the French embassy in Phnom Penh denied their visa applications to attend court. A press release said the 11 included a

  • EBA withdrawal provides ‘opportunity for growth’

    Economic analyst Khoun Bunny said on Tuesday that the loss of the EU’s preferential Everything But Arms (EBA) agreement could be a golden opportunity for Cambodia to show it deserved to be ranked sixth on the list of the world’s fastest-growing economies. Government

  • Malaysia MP accused of ‘influencing law’

    Malaysian Member of Parliament (MP) Larry Sng arrived in Siem Reap early on Wednesday, in what was slammed by one NGO as efforts by Kuala Lumpur to “influence Cambodian law”. The Malaysian Embassy in Phnom Penh requested on January 30 “cooperation from the Ministry of Foreign

  • Ministries begin measures to offset EU’s EBA decision

    In the wake of the EU’s controversial announcement this week that it has begun the withdrawal process for Cambodia’s Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential agreement, government ministries and political analysts continued to share their reactions and economic mitigation plans in preparation for the