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Rainsy’s Facebook ‘like’ slander case postponed

Cambodia National Rescue Party youths listen to opposition leader Sam Rainsy speak from France via video link at the party’s headquarters last month.
Cambodia National Rescue Party youths listen to opposition leader Sam Rainsy speak from France via video link at the party’s headquarters last month. Heng Chivoan

Rainsy’s Facebook ‘like’ slander case postponed

A court hearing over claims that opposition leader Sam Rainsy defamed the CPP’s website administrator by accusing him of buying fake Facebook “likes” for Prime Minister Hun Sen, among other alleged social media foul play, was postponed yesterday at the request of the complainant’s lawyer.

Som Soeun filed the complaint against Rainsy on March 9 after the opposition leader posted what he said were instructions from Soeun telling party officials to ensure all members “like” the premier’s page and “unlike” Rainsy’s, and to organise “technical working groups” to create accounts to “like” Hun Sen.

Rainsy’s accusations also drew on a Post report that found that the premier had hundreds of thousands of “likes” from India and the Philippines – well-known homes of so-called “click farms”, which sell likes.

Soeun was requesting 20 million riel, or about about $5,000, in compensation.

However, a few minutes before yesterday’s hearing was set to open, a representative of Soeun’s lawyer, Suon Visal, verbally asked a court clerk for a delay as the attorney “has an urgent task in the provinces”. Visal was on Sunday elected the new head of the country’s bar association.

Judge Im Vannak rescheduled the hearing to November 8.

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