Reserve international Co-Investigating Judge Laurent Kasper-Ansermet has wiped the decision of his predecessor, Siegfried Blunk, and Cambodian counterpart and awarded prominent victim advocate Rob Hamill of New Zealand civil party status in Case 003.
The decision paves the way for more civil party applications from victims of the alleged crimes of former Democratic Kampuchea Navy commander Meas Muth and airforce commander Sou Met, who are suspects in government-opposed Case 003.
Kasper-Ansermet relied on the opinion of the two international Pre-Trial Chamber judges in asserting his authority to act alone in considering Hamill’s civil party application, which was rejected by Cambodian Co-Investigating Judge You Bunleng.
Kasper-Ansermet also relied on the findings of the two judges, who decried numerous procedural “irregularities” and determined the original rejection of Hamill’s application was “erroneous and unjust”.
Hamill’s brother was captured off the coast of Cambodia in 1978 and detained at the S-21 interrogation facility, where he was tortured and executed.