Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Wutty’s son ‘will sue if slurs continue’

Wutty’s son ‘will sue if slurs continue’

Wutty’s son ‘will sue if slurs continue’

The son of slain environmental activist Chut Wutty said he will file a defamation suit against government spokesman Phay Siphan if the official keeps insinuating Wutty was a “great log trader”.

Siphan took to Facebook to accuse the activist of being secretly involved in logging and poaching, just days after US President Barack Obama praised Wutty and the executive director of the Cambodian Human Rights Center, Chak Sopheap.

“My father loved animals and forests as much as his own life. He would never do that,” said Wutty’s eldest son, Chheuy Odom Rasmey, who added that he could easily rally character witnesses who had worked with his father’s Natural Resource Protection Group.

“I will gather communities who worked with my father to be witnesses and talk about his activities,” he said.

Siphan told the Post he would welcome the defamation complaint, saying he only posted on Facebook to show Obama who the real Chut Wutty was.

“I do not want to pick up a fuss with [Wutty’s] family or Cambodian society. I just want to establish that he did not live up to his reputation as a hero or prominent man. He was an opportunist,” Siphan said.

But Chhim Savuth, current director of the Natural Resource Protection Group, said the accusations against the late Wutty are baseless.

“We already know the government does not accept the facts and is always using some kind of pretext,” he said.

“I would support Wutty’s family filing a complaint against Siphan.”

Wutty was shot dead on April 26, 2012, in Koh Kong while he was leading two journalists to investigate illegal logging in the Cardamom Mountains.

The altercation left a military police officer dead as well. The only person charged in the case was the logging company’s security guard, who walked free after serving a few weeks of his two-year sentence for manslaughter.

MOST VIEWED

  • Serious flooding across country

    The Kampong Speu provincial Committee for Disaster Management on Wednesday issued an alert after non-stop heavy rain caused widespread flooding. In Koh Kong province, authorities are working with the disaster committee and the Cambodian Red Cross to assist those affected after more than 350 homes were

  • CNRP points to King in call for vote boycott

    Leaders of the former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) have taken a new tack in their call for a boycott of the national elections later this month. They are now claiming that the people should follow the King, who is expected to abide by tradition

  • Actress’s NGO takes heat for promoting the ruling party

    An actress’s NGO which participated in an election campaign event contrary to the Law on Association and Non-Governmental Organisations (Lango) has been slammed. Chorn Chanleakena, a celebrity and the president of the Association of Artists Volunteering to Help Society, allegedly led its members in

  • Troop moves ‘won’t worry people’

    Senior officials at the Ministry of Defence and National Police said on Tuesday that riot training provided to the country’s police forces were aimed at preventing unexpected demonstrations and strikes before and after the July 29 national elections. The troop mobilisation, they said, would not