Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Im Chaem defence lauds decision



Im Chaem defence lauds decision

Im Chaem's defense lawyer Wayne Jordash. ECCC
Im Chaem's defense lawyer Wayne Jordash. ECCC

Im Chaem defence lauds decision

Defence lawyers for the Khmer Rouge’s Im Chaem have welcomed a highly redacted decision to dismiss her case, saying it was a “milestone in her long and difficult march towards justice”.

Chaem, a district chief who had the authority to order executions, was deemed too low-ranking to be held responsible for crimes against humanity under the regime, but the bulk of the legal reasoning for throwing out her case was redacted from the co-investigators’ filing, drawing criticism from tribunal observers.

Lawyers Bit Seanglim and Wayne Jordash praised the investigating judges for their “careful consideration of the facts” and for fairly evaluating the evidence, despite the lengthy proceedings.

“[D]espite these regrettable circumstances, our client welcomes the dismissal of all charges and the lifting of some of the weight of the unfair and inaccurate allegations she has faced for almost ten years,” they said.

“She has always denied every allegation and today’s decision is a significant step towards demonstrating her innocence and clearing her name.”

Chaem’s case has long been controversial; the government has been openly opposed to it, and it also splintered the prosecution team. National Co-Prosecutor Chea Leang argued the charges should be dropped as Chaem was not a senior leader, but International Co-Prosecutor Nicholas Koumjian said Chaem was one of those “most responsible” and forged ahead.

“[T]he International Co-Prosecutor’s assessment was flawed and ultimately wrong,” the defence said.

Koumjian yesterday noted that most factual findings in the decision were classified confidential. “[I]f Im Chaem’s defence is truly convinced that the evidence shows the case should never have been pursued, I hope they will join me in asking that both sides’ submissions and the judges’ full reasoning be made public, so that everyone can see the state of the evidence,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Would you like fries with that? US burger chain makes Phnom Penh debut

    California-based The Habit Burger Grill restaurant chain is all set to serve up a delicious array of charbroiled burgers and sides at its newest international location in the centre of Phnom Penh. The Habit is “renowned for its award-winning Charburgers grilled over an open flame,

  • Phnom Penh underpass opens to ease traffic

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced a temporary opening of the 488m underpass at the Chaom Chao roundabout in Phnom Penh’s Por Sen Chey district, which was recently completed to connect traffic from National Road 4 to Russian Federation Blvd. The move is to reduce

  • Banteay Meanchey flood victims receive aid

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday provided aid to more than 10,000 families affected by flooding in Banteay Meanchey province’s Mongkol Borei district and offered his condolences to the 18 victims who drowned in the province over the past week. He said flooding had occured in

  • PM urges caution as Polish man tests positive for Covid

    The Ministry of Health on Wednesday reported that a 47-year-old Polish man tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Cambodia on Monday. There are a total of six Covid-19 patients currently in the country, all of whom are being treated at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital

  • Serving coffee with a side of robots

    The eye-catching glass building surrounded by greenery at the intersection of Streets 371 and 2002 in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district is more than just another coffee shop where you can while away a few hours. UrHobby House cafe is filled with robots and characters from

  • Banteay Meanchey floods kill one more as death toll reaches 15

    As floodwaters start to recede in Pursat, Battambang and Pailin provinces and Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey continues to bear the brunt as one more person was killed on Monday, bringing the total number of flood-related deaths to 15 in the province this month. Banteay Meanchey provincial