Disgraced General Loses Supreme Court Appeal

The Supreme Court on Monday upheld a guilty verdict and 20-year prison sentence handed down to a former military general and an accomplice in 2013 for large-scale drug trafficking.

Chan Rithidy, 45, and his accomplice Deap Sunlay, 54, were found guilty on drug trafficking charges in December 2013 for distributing methamphetamine out of Mr. Rithidy’s Phnom Penh villa the year before. Sentenced to 20 years in prison, the pair challenged the verdict, but the Appeal Court upheld the decision last year.

Deap Sunlay leaves the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh yesterday after the court upheld his 20-year sentence for drug trafficking. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)
Deap Sunlay leaves the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh yesterday after the court upheld his 20-year sentence for drug trafficking. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)

On Monday, the Supreme Court put the matter to bed.

“The Supreme Court has decided to uphold the Appeal Court’s verdict,” Presiding Judge Khim Pon announced on Monday, declining to explain the higher court’s decision.

Mr. Rithidy was not present during the hearing, and court-appointed attorneys for Mr. Rithidy and Mr. Sunlay were also absent.

The two were arrested in 2012 after undercover police posed as drug dealers and offered to buy 200 grams of methamphetamine from Mr. Rithidy, then a major general in the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces, for $10,000.

Mr. Rithidy admitted to possession of about 1 kg of crystal methamphetamine and 15 ecstasy pills found during a raid on his house in August 2012, but denied knowledge of an additional 5 kg of drugs seized by anti-narcotics police.

On trial in 2013, Mr. Sunlay confessed to traveling to Laos in 2007 to meet with suppliers for Mr. Rithidy. Outside the Supreme Court on Monday, however, he said he knew nothing about the drugs discovered by police in 2012.

“I told the court that although I was involved with Dy once a long time ago, in this case, I wasn’t involved,” he said, using a nickname for the disgraced general.

Following his arrest, police seized furniture and other valuables from Mr. Rithidy’s three-story villa in Meanchey district and forbade his family from entering the building, saying the property had been purchased with drug money.

[email protected]

Related Stories

Latest News

The Weekly DispatchA new weekly newsletter from The Cambodia Daily delivering news, analysis and opinion to your inbox. Published every Friday at 11:30am. Sign up today.