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7 Feb 2024


Cambodia: Rattanakiri Provincial Court sentence environmental rights defender to one year imprisonment for his activism

"Continuation of Judicial Harassment Against Environmental and Political Activists", 7 February 2024

…, provincial courts convicted two well-known activists in separate cases, continuing the trend of judicial harassment against human rights advocates in Cambodia.

The Ratanakiri Provincial Court … announced its verdict convicting environmental activist Chhorn Phalla of defamation, insult and incitement to commit a felony under Articles 305, 502 and 495 of the Cambodian Criminal Code. The court sentenced Phalla to one year in prison and imposed a 10 million riel (around US$2,500) fine.

Phalla is an outspoken environmental activist who has been repeatedly prosecuted for his advocacy for the protection of natural resources and monitoring of deforestation. Phalla had been imprisoned since September 2021 for criminal charges arising from two other separate cases. Both cases were also based on his activism. Phalla was finally released from prison in October 2023 after his convictions in the other two cases were overturned, only to be again convicted …