Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sovantha ups damage claim against Rainsy

Sovantha ups damage claim against Rainsy

Social media starlet Thy Sovantha, who is currently suing opposition leader Sam Rainsy, speaks to the press outside the Phnom Penh court yesterday.
Social media starlet Thy Sovantha, who is currently suing opposition leader Sam Rainsy, speaks to the press outside the Phnom Penh court yesterday. Hong Menea

Sovantha ups damage claim against Rainsy

Social media personality Thy Sovantha yesterday upped her claim for damages in the defamation suit she’s bringing against Cambodia National Rescue Party president Sam Rainsy.

The former opposition supporter-turned-vocal CNRP critic said she now wants $500,000 from the exiled politician, up from the initial request of $250,000 made on January 14.

Her lawyer, Ly Chantola, said the claim was increased because fallout has continued online from the alleged defamatory remarks, while Rainsy has not backed down.

“We have been monitoring Facebook posts and videos about the words Sam Rainsy said, and it continues,” Chantola said.

The 21-year-old sued Rainsy for alleging she took a $1 million bribe from Prime Minister Hun Sen to attack the opposition.

The premier also filed a defamation action over the comments just a day after Sovantha, requesting $1 million in damages, a judgment he said would force Rainsy to sell CNRP headquarters to fulfil.

Speaking outside the Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday, Sovantha balked at questions about whether someone was directing her actions. “If he did not defame me, I could not file a lawsuit, so we don’t need to create rumours about who is behind my lawsuit,” she said.

Rainsy’s accusation stems from text messages leaked online purporting to show Sovantha corresponding with Hun Sen. Another set of leaked messages suggested the premier’s son Hun Manith, head of military intelligence, also colluded with the social media personality.

Sovantha reiterated her denial that the leaks were genuine. “I’ve already explained that that case is not true,” she said, adding she had requested the Interior Ministry investigate the hacking of her Facebook account, on which the messages appeared.

Rainsy’s lawyer, Sam Sokong, said it was too early to worry about compensation as the investigation was ongoing.

MOST VIEWED

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro

  • Num banh chok pizza a new fusion hit

    Num banh chok is a traditional fish curry with fermented rice noodles, prahok fish paste, kroeung paste, flowering plants and seasonal vegetables that is arguably a strong contender for “national dish” status in Cambodia and typically served for breakfast or eaten as an afternoon snack.

  • Cambodia detects new Covid cases after 52 days: PM

    After 52 days of zero new Covid-19 cases, Cambodia has now detected new infections, according to Prime Minister Hun Sen. In his special audio address to the nation late on June 28, Hun Sen said the new cases were detected on people who had undergone PCR tests

  • Higher education leaders tour US

    With support from the US Department of State, 10 Cambodian leaders in higher education participated in the 10-day International Visitors Leadership Programme (IVLP) in three US states from June 19 to July 1. They included nine university rectors and directors of higher education institutions who are members of

  • Gold-covered boundary stone found within Angkor Thom’s West Gate

    The Apsara National Authority (ANA) announced that their working group in charge of restoration work at Angkor Thom's Takav Gate or the West Gate recently found an ancient stone slab commonly known as a boundary stone. The boundary stone is 53 cm by 53 cm and 12 cm

  • Angkor ticket sales jump by 1,000 per cent in the first half

    Angkor Archaeological Park netted more than $2.4 million from ticket sales in the first half of 2022, an increase of more than 1,000 per cent year-on-year, Angkor Enterprise reported. According to a July 1 statement issued by Angkor Enterprise, the state-run institution that manages tickets sales for international visitors