Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Muth’s lawyer calls for case to be terminated

Muth’s lawyer calls for case to be terminated

Meas Muth defence counsel Michael Karnavas attends a hearing in the Khmer Rouge tribunal’s Case 002 in 2012. Mark Peters/ECCC
Meas Muth defence counsel Michael Karnavas attends a hearing in the Khmer Rouge tribunal’s Case 002 in 2012. Mark Peters/ECCC

Muth’s lawyer calls for case to be terminated

The defence team for Meas Muth has said terminating the proceedings against the alleged Khmer Rouge naval commander is the “only legitimate and lawful option” if funds cannot be found to ensure a fair trial.

The co-investigating judges at the Khmer Rouge tribunal in May made a confidential request for submissions on whether to issue a “permanent stay on proceedings” in the government-opposed cases 003, against Muth; 004, against Yim Tith; and 004/02, against Ao An. The co-investigators cited a “lack of funding” as the reason for the proposed stay, a justification that raised eyebrows among court observers.

Muth’s lawyer Michael Karnavas yesterday confirmed he had made such a submission.

“Effectively, if our client is indicted, then afford him his human rights, give him a full and fair trial and, if necessary, an appeal. If the UN and Cambodian Government cannot afford to maintain the ECCC, to properly fund it, to go the distance as it must, then the only legitimate and lawful option is to terminate the proceedings immediately,” he said.

“Anything less would be a pretence, a charade of due process.”

Lawyers for Yim Tith and Ao An declined to comment yesterday, citing the confidentiality of the process, and the prosecution did not respond to requests for comment.

A decision on the fate of all three cases was extended last month, but court spokesperson Hayat Abu-Saleh said yesterday no deadline had been set.

MOST VIEWED

  • Breaking: US House passes 'Cambodia Democracy Act'

    The US House of Representatives in Washington, DC, on Monday, passed the “HR 526 Cambodia Democracy Act”, also known as the Cambodia Democracy Act of 2019. If signed off by the president, the bill will allow two major sets of action to be taken against high-ranking Cambodian

  • ‘Zero-dollar’ tours under fire

    Minister of Tourism Thong Khon has blamed “zero-dollar” tour operators for the decrease in foreign tourists to Angkor Archaeological Park in the first half of this year and has called for action against them. Angkor Archaeological Park received 1.24 million foreign visitors in the first half

  • Breaking: Rubbish found packed inside 83 containers at S'ville port

    Eighty-three containers packed with rubbish were broken open at Sihanoukville Autonomous Port by joint authorities on Tuesday. The origin of the containers has yet to be ascertained, Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said. Pheaktra, who is also the ministry’s secretary of state, said

  • Some jobs off limits to foreigners from August

    Beginning from the second week of August, foreigners will be banned from driving taxis and tuk-tuks, as well as being motorcycle delivery drivers, street food vendors, hairdressers and product distributors among other lower-income jobs. Some white-collar jobs such as the head of human resources will