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

  • Phnom Penh unveils rules for post-lockdown transition

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration issued a set of detailed guidelines for the seven days to May 12 after the capital emerges from lockdown at the onset of May 6. In the 14-page document signed by municipal governor Khuong Sreng released on the evening of May 5, the

  • SBI LY HOUR Bank Launches Cross Border Money Transfer Service between Cambodia and Vietnam on RippleNet, utilizing DLT

    SBI LY HOUR Bank Plc and Hanoi-based Tien Phong Commercial Joint Stock Bank (TPBank) on Friday launched the first Cambodia-Vietnam money transfer service in real currency via RippleNet, provided by SBI Ripple Asia Co Ltd to provide safe, fast and convenient services. SBI LY HOUR

  • Gov’t issues guidelines as lockdown nears end

    The government has issued a five-page set of instructions to be enforced when the three-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Takmao town in Kandal province ends on May 6. According to an announcement signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen on May 4, the instructions cover a

  • Cambodia ready to exit LDC status

    Cambodia is well-prepared to minimise economic risks when it graduates from its Least Developed Countries status, according to a senior official at the Ministry of Commerce on May 7. Four LDCs – Cambodia, Laos, Bangladesh and Nepal – met at a virtual workshop last week to explore potential

  • Nine US franchises eye Cambodia debut

    Nine famous US franchising companies are looking for business opportunities and expansion into Cambodia to build a footstep for a strong foundation in Southeast Asia. The US embassy in Phnom Penh, in partnership with the US Foreign Commercial Service and with support from the American

  • Lost in translation: ‘Starvation’ in capital’s designated red zones

    “DACH bay” is a Khmer slang meaning a “loss of income”, that could also be literally translated to «deprived of rice”, which alludes to starvation. However, civil society organisation (CSO) officials have independently confirmed the government’s prior assertions that there are no cases of