Court to Confiscate Garment Factory Property

Phnom Penh Municipal Court is scheduled to confiscate the property of the former Sam Han garment factory in Russei Keo district on Friday, officials said Wed­nesday.

The confiscation stems from a judgement in favor of Union Com­mercial Bank, which sought to recover loans it made to the manufacturer.

“We have released the last or­der,” court clerk Prak Savouth said. “It is the complaint from UCB Bank.”

The court clerk said that the officials will catalogue all the properties on the abandoned site to prepare for a public auction.

Sam Han owner Kim Do Sam is also being sued by the government for the return of the $1.26 mil­lion the Ministry of Finance lent the factory between October 2004 and February to pay workers’ wages.

The factory is also being sued by the Federal Union of Solidarity, the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers Democratic Union and the Advanced Bank of Asia.

Ker Soksidney, adviser to Minis­ter of Social Affairs Ith Sam Heng, who heads the special committee set up to deal with the Sam Han case, said Wednesday that the court ruled on the UCB case on July 5, in advance of the government’s case.

The government may seek an injunction by Friday to stop the im­plementation of the UCB ruling, he said.

“According to the Labor Law, workers must be paid first,” he said. “We have until Friday to de­cide.”

Ker Soksidney said the government’s lawsuit is still working its way through Municipal Court, adding that those working on the case were surprised that UCB’s case was adjudicated first.

The disappearance of Kim Do Sam and the closure of his factory in February led to days of protests by some of the 10,000 garment workers.

 

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