The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) on Tuesday afternoon charged former Khmer Rouge navy chief Meas Muth and former district commander Im Chaem—accused in Case 003 and Case 004, respectively—with crimes against humanity.
In two separate statements posted to the website of the ECCC, International Co-Investigating Judge Mark Harmon announced a series of charges against the two suspects, both in absentia.
Meas Muth is facing charges including homicide, enslavement, imprisonment and inhumane acts allegedly committed against foreigners at sea and on islands claimed by Democratic Kampuchea. He is also charged with war crimes.
Charges against Im Chaem—who has previously stated her intention not to cooperate with the court—include murder, extermination and persecution on political grounds at the Phnom Trayoung security center, which was located in Banteay Meanchey province. She is also charged with murder, enslavement and imprisonment at the nearby Spean Sreng worksite.
The two have been under investigation, along with a number of other Khmer Rouge cadre, since 2009 but have never been publicly named by the tribunal as suspects in the government-opposed Cases 003 and 004.
Prime Minister Hun Sen, who has long insisted that no more Khmer Rouge members stand trial, last week warned in a speech that civil war could break out if the ECCC attempted to further expand its scope.
Mr. Hun Sen claimed that the court’s investigations had “almost gone beyond the limit” and could lead former cadre to return to the forest and take up arms.