Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Union chief Rong Chhun lodges complaint to court

Union chief Rong Chhun lodges complaint to court

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Cambodian Confederation of Unions president Rong Chhun files a complaint to the Appeal Court on Wednesday. heng chivoan

Union chief Rong Chhun lodges complaint to court

Cambodian Confederation of Unions president Rong Chhun on Wednesday filed a complaint to the Appeal Court against the suspended jail term handed down by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court for his alleged role in 2014 Veng Sreng Boulevard protests that turned violent.

On December 11, six union leaders were given two and a half year suspended sentences for “intentional acts of violence with aggravating circumstances”, and ordered to pay five million riel (around $1,250) each in compensation to two plaintiffs.

Pav Sina of the Collective Union of Movement of Workers, Yang Sophorn, of the Cambodian Alliance of Trade Unions, Ath Thorn, of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers Democratic Union, Mom Nhim, of the National Independent Federation Textile Union of Cambodia, and Chea Mony, the former president of the Free Trade Union, were also convicted.

Sina, Sophorn and Thorn have already filed appeals and are awaiting a court date.

Chhun told The Post on Wednesday that he was innocent and was not even on Veng Sreng Boulevard when the protests occurred.

His lawyer had previously told the court that he, Sina and Sophorn were attending a meeting with the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training regarding workers’ wages at the time of the incident.

He said the January 2014 protests sought an increase in the minimum wage for garment workers to $160 per month and that he and the workers were victims, not criminals.

“I filed a complaint to the Appeal Court because I cannot accept the Phnom Penh Municipal Court’s decision. The decision was unfair for me and five other union leaders."

Chhun said he expects to receive justice and have the charges against him dropped “if the court practices the law in a professional manner”.

Thorn said he had filed an appeal on December 12 and hoped the court would render him justice because the charge against him was unreasonable.

“The Appeal Court has not summoned [me] to a hearing regarding this case. We are still waiting."

“We will not only appeal this time, we will appeal at all legal stages until they drop the charges. We don’t know when the court will summon us. I hope the Appeal Court will give us justice,” he said.

Neither Phnom Penh Municipal Court spokesperson Ly Sophana nor Appeal Court spokesman Touch Tharith could be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Hun Sen said on December 12 that he believed three of those convicted, Mony, Sina and Thorn, were innocent.

MOST VIEWED

  • First deportees of the year touch down in Cambodia

    Twenty-five Cambodian-Americans landed in Phnom Penh on Wednesday, marking the first such deportations of the year. “On Wednesday, US law enforcement authorities deported 25 Cambodian nationals that immigration judges determined had no legal basis to remain in the US,” said Arend Zwartjes, spokesperson for the US

  • Qatar Airways to connect Doha and Siem Reap town

    Qatar Airways Company QCSC has announced a new route connecting Qatar’s capital Doha with Siem Reap, a move hailed by local officials as a significant step to boost tourist numbers. A Qatar Airways representative, speaking at the Kuwait Aviation Show, announced on Thursday that

  • Kingdom drafting new law to strengthen immigration

    The Ministry of Interior on Tuesday said it had formed a working group to draft amendments to the Law on Immigration. Its secretary of state Sok Phal told The Post that the amendments will strengthen the management of immigrants in line with the current situation.

  • Sokha defence denies Tech’s claims

    ON DAY two of Kem Sokha’s treason trial, lawyers for the government said the defence had raised questions in an attempt to allow their client to make a public statement and a conclusion to the case, something his legal team denied. Ky Tech, a

  • Cambodian general visits Myanmar to enhance national defence cooperation

    Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF) commander-in-chief Vong Pisen is now in Myanmar leading a delegation that aims to improve ties, particularly in national defence, with the fellow Asean member. The timing of Pisen’s four-day visit to the Southeast Asian neighbour is highly symbolic, with

  • Sokha’s treason trial begins

    The treason trial of Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) president Kem Sokha began at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Wednesday with the presentation of a two-minute video clip. The footage, which was the basis of the charge against him, was dismissed by