SIEM Reap Provincial court yesterday heard the case against three villagers from Chi Kraeng commune accused of locking lawyers and judges in a courtroom during a protest related to a land dispute in January last year.
Chheng Savoeun, Thorng Sareth and Khlin Eang are charged with illegal incitement, insulting officials and illegal human detention. A verdict in the trial is expected on August 20, the same day a verdict will be announced in the case against nine Chi Kraeng villagers charged with attempted intentional manslaughter in connection with the dispute.
Siem Reap town monk official Toek Bunlang said seven monks and military police tried to remove monk Luon Sovath from a protest outside the courtroom, saying he had dishonoured Buddhist principles.
“We want him to stay away from crowds with girls and boys,” he said. But Luon Sovath, who evaded arrest, said he had done nothing wrong. “I [protest] because my [relatives] and the community have been injured and jailed, and Buddhism’s disciplines allow for monks to visit relatives,” he said.