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Ex-officer’s sentence reduced

Former military officer Chhoeun Chanthan appears at an appeal hearing late last month.
Former military officer Chhoeun Chanthan appears at an appeal hearing late last month. Pha Lina

Ex-officer’s sentence reduced

A former senior military officer and bodyguard for the late Senate president Chea Sim saw his lengthy prison term reduced at the Court of Appeal, his attorney said yesterday.

After being arrested in 2011, Chhoeun Chanthan was sentenced to a total of 36 years in prison on a host of charges brought in both civilian and military court relating to weapons possession, forgery, embezzlement and military misconduct, among other things. He was also slapped with millions in fines and damages.

At an appeal hearing late last month, however, he saw his military court sentence slashed from 26 years to just 15, according to defence attorney Put Theavy.

Theavy said the reason for the sentence reduction was that all of Chanthan’s assets – including villas, land and the assets of his import-export business – had been seized by the Ministry of National Defence, the plaintiff in the case.

“Mr Chhoeun Chanthan is now empty-handed, and has nothing left besides the military prison room that he stays in.”

Theavy said that he will appeal for a further sentence reduction to the Supreme Court. A clerk there confirmed yesterday that Chanthan’s case was on the agenda for some time next month.

A previous version of this story implied Chanthan's sentence had been almost halved from 36 years to 15 years. The Appeal Court's decision referred only to his military court sentencing, which was reduced from 26 years to 15 years. His 10-year sentence in a civil case still stands after it was upheld by the Supreme Court. The Post apologises for any confusion caused.

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