The Appeal Court on Friday heard the case of three people who were jailed for violently attacking Professor Suy Sareth in Phnom Penh following an alleged hit-and-run traffic accident in March last year.
The Phnom Penh Municipal Court had sentenced each of them to three years in prison, with half of the term suspended, and ordered them to pay a total of 500 million riel ($122,700) in compensation to the victim and a fine of five million riel each.
According to the court record, following a hit-and-run traffic accident on March 11, last year, a mob chased and brutally attacked Sareth and his car with bricks and rocks.
The mob accused Sareth of striking and injuring Seur Seng, who was riding a motorbike, near Preah Kossamak Hospital in Tuol Kork district and subsequently driving off.
The Post reported after the incident that what followed was a brutal attack against Sareth, with at least a dozen people throwing punches, kicking him in the head, throwing large rocks at his face and slamming his fingers in the car door, as well as smashing and jumping on his car.
Police arrested two men on March 14, last year – Yath Tithya and An Vinty, both 21. A day later 31-year-old An Phally was also apprehended.
On November 2, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court sentenced each of them to three years in prison, but they were required to serve only 18 months with the rest of the sentence suspended.
In addition, the court ordered them to jointly compensate Sareth 500 million riel and to pay a fine of 5 million riel each for intentional violence and causing damage with aggravating circumstances in accordance with articles 218 and 411 of the Criminal Code.
At Friday’s hearing, Phally admitted to the judge that he had committed the crime and said he accepted the prison sentence, but he asked for the compensation payment to be reduced. “I ask the court to lower the amount of compensation because I am too poor to pay it,” he said.
Judge Yet Molin told the court that a verdict would be announced on July 8.