Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Publisher answers charges

Publisher answers charges

Publisher answers charges

Accused of defamation in corruption coverage.

THE publisher of a Khmer-language newspaper told a Municipal Court prosecutor Wednesday that he stood by articles detailing high-level corruption allegations, adding that he would not identify his newspaper's sources.

"When the prosecutor asked me to show them more information, I told them that I still stood by the information published in my newspaper and told them that I could not reveal the source of  the information," Hang Chakra, publisher of Khmer Machas Srok News, told the Post after the hearing.

Hang Chakra faces criminal and civil complaints in connection with three articles published in April and May that he said uncovered corruption on the part of officials working under Deputy Prime Minister Sok An.

He said Wednesday that he was considering filing a complaint against government lawyer Suong Chanthan, who filed the complaints against him.

Suong Chanthan said Wednesday that he planned to use the three articles to demonstrate that Hang Chakra is guilty of defamation and publishing false information.

Under the Press Law, publishing false information is a criminal offense for which the court can impose a fine of between 1 million riels (US$241) and 5 million riels. Defamation is a civil offense, and Suong Chanthan requested compensation totalling 10 million riels in that complaint.

Sam Rithy Doung Hak, deputy director of the Cambodian Association for the Protection of Journalists (CAPJ), said civil and criminal complaints against journalists posed a threat to democracy. 

MOST VIEWED

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • Shipwreck found off coast of Koh Kong

    Royal Cambodian Navy researchers are working to identify a decades-old shipwreck found earlier this month off the coast of Koh Kong province. Divers found the 70-metre-long wreck on April 4 about a mile from Koh Chhlam island, according to Navy officials. Deputy Navy Commander Tea Sokha,