Draft Lists Prisoners Slated for Royal Pardons

Continuing the tradition of granting royal pardons on his birthday, King Norodom Sihan­ouk is expected to reduce the prison sentences of 122 Cambo­dian criminals to mark the occasion of his 78th birthday.

A draft of the Ministry of Justice pardon list, dated Oct 27, from Justice Minister Uk Vithun to the King, outlines 118 criminals slated for sentence reductions and four prisoners who will be released outright.

Only prisoners who have served at least two-thirds of their original jail sentences are considered for inclusion on the list.

According to the Justice Minis­try document, prisoners who may benefit from the sentence reductions are 63 killers, seven rapists, 35 robbers and others convicted of a variety of other crimes.

Ministry of Interior spokesman Khieu Sopheak said Thursday the royal pardons have become an annual tradition that is recognized under the Constitution.

The King’s act of leniency should be an example to the prisoners to lead better lives when they are released, Khieu So­pheak said. “We expect them to change and behave better in the future,” Khieu Sopheak added.

The sentence reductions range from six months to one year.

Those chosen for the King’s pardon list have tried hard to change their behavior while in prison, the document states.



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