Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Capital court postpones hearing of Oz filmmaker

Capital court postpones hearing of Oz filmmaker

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Australian filmmaker James Ricketson arrives for questioning in court last year. Pha Lina

Capital court postpones hearing of Oz filmmaker

THE Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Friday postponed the hearing against Australian filmmaker James Ricketson as his defence lawyer was absent.

The 69-year-old filmmaker was brought to court with dozens of other detainees from Prey Sar prison, where he has been since his arrest last June.

He was charged under Article 446 of the Criminal Code with “collecting information which may undermine national security”, after he flew a drone over the court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party’s (CNRP) commune elections rally. He faces up to 10 years in prison if found guilty.

The hearing lasted about 30 minutes before the presiding judge, Seng Leang, ruled that it could not proceed without the presence of his lawyers as the accused was facing criminal charges.

Judge Leang said one of Ricketson’s lawyers, Peung Yok Hiep, had requested a month-long postponement so that she could prepare her defence.

Earlier, Prosecuting Attorney Sieng Sok began to present evidence against Ricketson when Leang said he needed to deliberate on the matter.

After five minutes, the judge returned to the court, and said, “We cannot proceed with the hearing. A future date will be determined later.”

There was also a minor confrontation between Ricketson and the judge when the former requested to cross-examine Sok and three witnesses.

However, the request was denied, with the judge saying: “You can challenge them during the hearing, but now we cannot proceed because there is no lawyer.”

Ricketson claimed his innocence, which he has done since his arrest last June, and said the charge brought against him and his detention had violated his rights.

He said he did not get a summons for the hearing and he did not have the relevant case documents. Replying, Judge Leang said: “You can get all relevant documents. Your lawyer can submit requests for copies of all relevant documents.”

The hearing will continue on an unspecified date.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Hun Sen: Cambodia set to fully reopen

    Prime Minister Hun Sen concludes that the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, during which many people either flocked to their hometowns for family reunion or gathered at tourist attractions across the country, has not caused an outbreak of Covid-19. In a special address to

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Cambodia resumes issuance of tourist visas

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has announced the resumption of its tourist visa and visa exemption programme after a long hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In a letter dated October 20 and addressed to foreign embassies and consulates, foreign minister Prak Sokhonn

  • Cambodia voted ‘world’s friendliest country’ in Rough Guides reader poll

    Cambodia ranked number one among the “World’s Friendliest Countries”, according to a reader poll conducted by London-based international website “Rough Guides”. Taking submissions through Twitter and Facebook, “Rough Guides”, a well-known travel agency and publisher of guidebooks, said the Kingdom “was by far the