Court Rejects Latest ‘Adhoc 5’ Request for Bail

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court rejected election official Ny Chakrya’s fourth request for bail on Tuesday, arguing that after holding him in detention for more than a year it still needed more time to investigate.

Mr. Chakrya is part of the “Adhoc 5,” former and current rights workers who were arrested last April as part of an investigation into then-CNRP deputy leader Kem Sokha’s alleged affair.

Four of the five are accused of trying to bribe Mr. Sokha’s alleged mistress to deny an affair; Mr. Chakrya is accused of being an accomplice.

They deny the charges.

The latest rejection letter, signed by Investigating Judge Theam Chan Piseth, says the court needs more time to investigate the allegations and cannot afford to take the risk that, if freed, Mr. Chakrya might pressure witnesses or collude with the other defendants—who are also all behind bars—to coordinate their accounts of events.

In his request for bail, Mr. Chakrya also asked that the court consider dropping the charge against him or start his trial soon.

The rejection letter addresses neither.

Mr. Chakrya’s lawyer, Sam Sokong, said on Wednesday that he would take his client’s requests to the Appeal Court.

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