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Court date set for Tax Department’s defamation case against Cambodia Daily deputy publisher

Cambodia Daily's Deputy publisher Deborah Krisher-Steele speaks on Tuesday at the Foreign Correspondents Club in Japan.
Cambodia Daily's Deputy publisher Deborah Krisher-Steele speaks on Tuesday at the Foreign Correspondents Club in Japan. Photo supplied

Court date set for Tax Department’s defamation case against Cambodia Daily deputy publisher

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court has set a March 22 trial date for a public defamation case filed by the Tax Department against Cambodia Daily deputy publisher Deborah Krisher-Steele, which was filed by the Tax Department.

The case relates to a letter to Kong Vibol, the director-general of the Tax Department, from Krisher-Steele after a leaked copy of the paper’s $6.3 million tax bill appeared on Fresh News, prompting her to call the release of a confidential document a breach of privacy laws. After the Daily was shuttered in September, the Tax Department filed the case against Krisher-Steele.

On Tuesday, a court notice board listed Krisher-Steele’s trial for March 22. Court administrator Y Rin was unable to confirm the date yesterday. Krisher-Steele said she had not been informed of an upcoming hearing. She added that she would be represented in court by a lawyer.

Krisher-Steele; her father Bernard Krisher, the newspaper’s founder; and the Daily’s general manager, Douglas Steele, are facing a tax evasion case and are banned from leaving the country, though only Steele is currently in Cambodia.

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