Judge Detains Adhoc 5 for Six More Months

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday extended for another six months the detention of the Adhoc 5.

Investigating Judge Theam Chan Piseth said the extension was needed to allow more time to interview witnesses, according to Lor Chunthy, an attorney for the Adhoc staffers.

Ny Sokha, Adhoc’s head of monitoring, his deputies Nay Vanda and Yi Soksan and senior investigator Lim Mony, along with Ny Chakrya, deputy secretary-general of the National Election Committee (NEC) and a former Adhoc employee, have been held in prison for one year without trial.

The four current Adhoc staff were charged and jailed last year for allegedly bribing the alleged mistress of opposition leader Kem Sokha to deny an affair.

Mr. Chakrya is accused of being an accomplice.

The latest extension of their detention is the second and last allowed under the law, according to Mr. Chunthy.

“Within the next six months, there will be a closing order about whether to acquit the charges or send them for a trial,” he said, adding that the judge had said he would try to close the case as quickly as possible.

Court spokesman Y Rin could not be reached on Thursday.

Defense attorneys for the five prisoners said they would appeal the continued detention.

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