Journalist handed 18-month sentence for incitement

The director of online news outlet TVFB was sentenced to 18 months in prison on October 5 after he reported on advice from Prime Minister Hun Sen to motorbike taxi drivers, telling them to sell their vehicles if the Covid-19 crisis is causing them financial distress.

TVFB Director Sovann Rithy was arrested for incitement in Sen Sok district on April 7 over a post on his personal Facebook profile in which he quoted Hun Sen as saying during a press conference: “If motorbike-taxi drivers go bankrupt, sell your motorbikes for spending money. The government does not have the ability to help.”

Phnom Penh Municipal Court Judge Li Sokha on October 5 handed the defendant 18-month sentence, the remainder of which has been suspended after six months served in pre-trial detention, according to court spokesman Kuch Kimlong said.

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