Protest violence as activist jailed

Protesters are caught up in scuffles outside Phnom Penh Municipal Court. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Protesters are caught up in scuffles outside Phnom Penh Municipal Court. KT/Chor Sokunthea

At least three women – one pregnant – and a man were hurt in a clash with security forces at Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday after land rights activist Tep Vanny was jailed for two and a half years over a 2013 protest.
Ms. Vanny was charged with using violence against Daun Penh security guards near Prime Minister Hun Sen’s house in Phnom Penh. Continue reading

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Tep Vanny hit with 30-month jail sentence

A fight erupts outside Phnom Penh Municipal Court this morning. Heng Chivoan

A fight erupts outside Phnom Penh Municipal Court this morning. Heng Chivoan

Violence marred the trial of prominent land activist Tep Vanny, who was sentenced earlier this morning to two years and six months for aggravated intentional violence in relation to a 2013 protest outside Prime Minister Hun Sen’s residence in Phnom Penh.

As Vanny’s trial resumed after a two week recess, Prampi Makara district security guards started to kick, shove and drag land activists who gathered outside the Phnom Penh Municipal Court premises, pushing them to the other side of the street. Two Boeung Kak lake activists and one pregnant woman from the Borei Keila community suffered minor injuries and fainted during the scuffle.

In the ensuing melee, about six security guards could be seen chasing Mao Socheat, a motodop and resident of Samaki Rainsy pagoda, into the nearby City Mall, where they beat him up for attempting to defend the protesters.

Video footage of guards beating Mao Socheat in City Mall:

“When we heard they were going to take Tep Vanny to prison, we wanted to show our support,” said Boeung Kak activist Song Sreyleap. “But the authorities did not want us to do that and beat us, pushed us away from the court.”

Inside Courtroom 3, screams and shouted slogans broke out among Vanny supporters as judge Long Kesor Pirum announced she would be sent to Prey Sar prison for 30 months. She was also fined 5 million riel ($1,240) and and ordered to pay 9 million riel ($2,240) in compensation to the two plaintiffs – Daun Penh security guards Hao Hoeurn and Ouk Ratana.

The trial, which commenced on February 3, was abruptly adjourned the same day after judge Kesor Pirum cited health reasons. Neither of the plaintiffs was in court nor were the Daun Penh security guards – with only their written statements read out during the trial.

“There were about 100 people at the protest on March 13, 2013,” read Hoeurn’s statement. “Then we heard Tep Vanny give the order to start violence against the authorities.”

Defense lawyer Sam Sokunthea, in her closing argument, said there was no truth to the security guards’ accusations and said the perfect synchronicity between prosecution witness testimonies was troubling.

“The evidence given by the plaintiffs is not reliable,” she said. “The evidence from them and the two prosecution witnesses seemed coordinated.”

Source: Phnom Penh Post

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Demonstrators Attacked as Cambodian Court Convicts Prominent Activist

Activist Bov Sophea was injured during a clash with security guards at the Phnom Penh Municipal Courthouse, Feb. 23, 2017.

Activist Bov Sophea was injured during a clash with security guards at the Phnom Penh Municipal Courthouse, Feb. 23, 2017.

Security guards outside a Phnom Penh courthouse attacked demonstrators who came to support land rights activist Tep Vanny during her trial Thursday for a 2013 protest near Prime Minister Hun Sen’s home. Continue reading

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Activist Tep Vanny Sentenced to More Than Two Years in Prison

Prominent Boeng Kak activist Tep Vanny smiles as she is transported to a hearing at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court earlier this month. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)

Prominent Boeng Kak activist Tep Vanny smiles as she is transported to a hearing at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court earlier this month. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)

Tep Vanny, one of the country’s most prominent rights activists, was sentenced to two and a half years in prison on Thursday over charges related to a protest outside Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Phnom Penh mansion in 2013.

The decision is the latest in what is widely Continue reading

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Court hears appeal of Tep Vanny, activists

Tep Vanny escorted by officials after her bail request was denied in Appeals Court yesterday in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Tep Vanny escorted by officials after her bail request was denied in Appeals Court yesterday in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Tep Vanny and three fellow Boeung Kak activists yesterday maintained their innocence and requested all charges be dropped as they contested their six-month prison sentences handed down over a 2011 clash between their community and security personnel. Continue reading

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Authorities thwart Boeung Kak event

Boeung Kak community members protest outside of the Council of Ministers office in Phnom Penh yesterday. Heng Chivoan

Boeung Kak community members protest outside of the Council of Ministers office in Phnom Penh yesterday. Heng Chivoan

Some 30 Boeung Kak land activists yesterday were blocked by 50 Daun Penh district security guards from delivering a petition to the Council of Ministers seeking Prime Minister Hun Sen’s intervention in helping release fellow activist Tep Vanny.

The group of women claimed they were travelling by Continue reading

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Capital police tout hard work in halting protests

black_monday_protester

A ‘Black Monday’ protester leads the march at Boeung Kak area of Phnom Penh last year. Pha Lina

While a new report from the Phnom Penh Municipal Police bemoans ongoing issues in controlling the illegal use of firearms, there was one area in which they excelled last year – thwarting “colour revolutions”.

Released during the department’s annual meeting on Continue reading

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