Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sentence stands in KPPM trial

Sentence stands in KPPM trial

Sentence stands in KPPM trial

Th Court of Appeal yesterday upheld a verdict against Sourn Serey Ratha, leader of the dissident Khmer People Power Movement (KPPM), two KPPM affiliates and a non-party member who were all found guilty in January of treason.

During a two-hour hearing yesterday afternoon, presiding judge Pak Chansambo questioned three of the defendants – KPPM members Serey Bunlong, Sen Someng and civilian Oum Phirum – over charges that they distributed T-shirts with slogans warning citizens to abstain from voting in the 2013 national election. Serey Ratha, who lives in self-imposed exile in the US and did not attend the hearing, was found guilty of a range of crimes spanning many years.

Chansambo said the verdicts against all four would be upheld: Bunlong, Someng and Phirum were previously sentenced to six years in prison and fined about $1,250, while Serey Ratha was sentenced to seven years in prison and fined about $6,250.

Defence lawyer Sok Sam Oeun, said Serey Ratha – who is in the process of trying to register a political party – was merely being critical of the government, not trying to violently overthrow it. Such criticism “is normal for other political parties”, he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Protests planned in New York as Hun Sen to attend the UN

    Prime Minister Hun Sen will speak at the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week. But US-based supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) plan to throw eggs at his car as part of a series of protests to coincide

  • CPP: ‘Behave or Sokha suffers’

    The ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman warned Kem Monovithya on Thursday that her attempt to damage “national reputation and prestige” would lead to her father, Kem Sokha, receiving even harsher punishment. Sok Eysan issued the warning as Monovithya, who is the court dissolved

  • News Analysis: Defiance can last for how long?

    The Cambodian government has so far stood strong in the face of mounting international pressure over its treatment of critics, but analysts, diplomats and ruling party officials now wonder how long the defiance can last. The European Union has led the firestorm of criticism, threatening

  • ‘Freedom fighters’ or ‘foreign puppets?’

    Former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) official Meach Sovannara was joined by supporters at a rally in California on Saturday, where a US lawmaker hailed members of the outlawed opposition as “great freedom fighters”. However, a Cambodian government spokesman said such a phrase belonged to