Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Preah Vihear court drops charges against villagers

Preah Vihear court drops charges against villagers

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Preah Vihear Provincial Court has dropped all charges against eight ethnic Kuoy villagers who were in a land dispute with the Hengfu Group Sugar Industry Co Ltd since 2014. Facebook

Preah Vihear court drops charges against villagers

The Preah Vihear Provincial Court has dropped all charges against eight ethnic Kuoy villagers who were in a land dispute with the Hengfu Group Sugar Industry Co Ltd since 2014.

Wednesday’s decision was made by the judge who tried the case on June 10. The eight were accused of detention and illegal confinement.

Defence lawyer Sam Tithseyha told The Post on Thursday it was the right decision because they are the victims and this decision shows their innocence as they are not guilty of the charges and have good names in society.

He said the court’s decision is a sign of a reformed system that delivers justice.

“The decision to let my clients go free is appreciated, and I suggest it serve as a model to all other provincial and municipal courts to keep as an example to find the truth in land conflicts between citizens and powerful men and companies,” he said.

In 2014, many citizens living at the Boss Thom village, Brame commune, Tbeng Meanchey district were having land conflicts with Heng Fu and two company bulldozers were allegedly seized.

After this happened, 16 citizens, including 14 ethnic Kuoy villagers, were accused of detention and illegal confinement.

One official from the Ponlok Khmer NGO was accused of conspiracy following a complaint from the bulldozer drivers of the Chinese company.

As the lawsuit and protests dragged on, the official and some citizens had their charges dropped by the court, Adhoc coordinator Lor Chan in Preah Vihear province told The Post.

Chan called Wednesday’s final decision good news for the community and the accused.

MOST VIEWED

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • 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

  • 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

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer

  • Singapore backs Cambodia's efforts on Myanmar

    Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong supports Cambodia in its efforts to seek a solution to the ongoing Myanmar crisis as the chair of ASEAN. Lee expressed his support during a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen via videoconference on January 14, with the talks focused