Cambodia: Phnom Penh Municipal Court trials Beung Kak women activists for intentional assault; activists claim court's actions as intimidation to civic freedoms

Author: Long Kimmarita, The Phnom Penh Post, Published on: 14 March 2019

"Boeung Kak activists stand trial for ‘intentional assault’", 14 March 2019

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court … heard a case of intentional violence against four Boeung Kak community activists following an incident two years ago in which a woman, Sat Pha, alleges she was assaulted and had $300 and a mobile phone taken.

Deputy prosecutor Seng Heang summoned Nhet Khun and three daughters Eng Huoy, Eng Srey Heang and Eng Sokha to … hearing to answer to the June 2017 charge under Article 217 of the Criminal Code.

Nhet Khun, 77, said she believed the case was intimidation and an attempt to stop them from engaging in ongoing protests by the wife of jailed Cambodian Construction Workers Trade Union Federation president Rath Rott Mony, Long Kimheang, against his detention…

“The summons to the hearing came after we participated in a protest with Long Kimheang to demand the release of Rath Rott Mony. They want to separate us. However, we will continue to help Rath Rott Mony because I want justice,” she said.

Eng Sokha alleged they were pressured to thumbprint a document. She said they wanted to carefully read the document but were not allowed to do so.

“A clerk wrote an exaggerated note that we insulted the victim and that Eng Huoy was at the scene and stopped [an argument], but some of us were not even there. This is an injustice. [We] hope the court will drop the charge against us,” she said…

… Court spokesman Ly Sophana could not be reached for comment.

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