Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - High court hears Sovannara travel appeal

High court hears Sovannara travel appeal

Jailed CNRP official Meach Sovannara appears at the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh yesterday.
Jailed CNRP official Meach Sovannara appears at the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh yesterday. Heng Chivoan

High court hears Sovannara travel appeal

The Supreme Court yesterday heard the appeal of a decision barring CNRP official and US citizen Meach Sovannara from seeking medical treatment in the US while he serves a 20-year sentence for “leading an insurrection”.

Sovannara told presiding judge Kem Sathavy that the Phnom Penh Municipal Court’s decision to not allow him to travel was unjust, because he needed a check up over a 2015 traffic accident in the US.

However, Chhuon Chantha, a deputy Supreme Court prosecutor, maintained the lower court’s decision was correct. “The court made the decision, so the convict will get nothing from this request,” Chantha said.

Sovannara, who is suing the Cambodian government in the US for his jailing, was sentenced over a violent July 2014 Freedom Park protest in a trial based on questionable evidence during a time of tense negotiations between the ruling and opposition parties.

A lawyer for Sovannara, Choung Choungy, said he hoped the travel ban would simply be annulled. “In choosing a doctor, everyone has the freedom to choose one they trust,” he said. “I ask the court to annul this verdict.”

A verdict is due October 26.

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has given the green light for anyone who contracts the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron mutation or any other variant to convalesce or receive treatment at home or in any other reasonable non-healthcare setting. The new decision supersedes a restriction on home care for

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that