Duch Requests ECCC Pay for His Defense Lawyers

Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, does not have enough money to pay for his own attorneys, the Khmer Rouge tribunal said in a statement released Wednesday evening.

Duch, who was charged with crimes against humanity this week and is now the sole occupant of the court’s new 8-cell detention facility, has requested two lawyers—Kar Savuth, a Cam­bodian attorney, and French lawyer Francois Roux—to be paid by the Extraordinary Cham­bers in the Courts of Cambodia, the statement said.

Under the tribunal’s 2004 budget estimate, the UN planned to commit nearly $4.8 million to lawyer fees for indigent defendants like Duch.

Rupert Skilbeck, the tribunal’s principal defender, said in an interview that the court will pay foreign defense attorneys a net salary of at least $74,000 a year, though attorneys can claim up to an additional 40 percent to cover professional costs, such as bar association fees and the expense of running a legal office.

The maximum a foreign de­fense attorney paid through the ECCC can earn is $11,500 a month—or $138,000 a year-Skil­beck said.

Those fees were set based on the UN compensation category—a P5 classification, which is re­­served for people with at least a decade of experience—that ap­plies to tribunal prosecutors, he said.

The fees the ECCC will pay Cambodian defense attorneys have yet to be determined, he added.

Cambodian tribunal staffers make half what their foreign counterparts do in other sections of the court.

Skilbeck said the Defense Sup­port Section, which he heads, has collected about 30 applications from lawyers seeking to be eligible for ECCC compensation.

About half are Cambodian at­torneys, and half international ap­plicants, who must also be certified by the Bar Association of the King­dom of Cambodia before they can represent clients, he said.

Applications from international lawyers seeking to work at the tribunal will normally be forwarded to the bar on a monthly basis, and Skilbeck said he expects to send the first batch over next week.

Roux filed his application to the bar Tuesday, after Duch appointed him to his defense team, Skil­beck added.

(Additional reporting Kuch Naren)

 

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