The Pursat Provincial Court on Monday charged a CNRP official with injuring a 6-year-old boy struck in a hit-and-run during an opposition commune election rally on Saturday, a court official said.
One CNRP official repeated his claims from Sunday that the case against Chan Senghurt, chief of the CNRP provincial executive committee, was “political,” a claim dismissed by provincial court deputy prosecutor Chhay Hong.
“The charge is not a political issue. We charged the man with a crime because he drove a car and hit the boy and caused him to get serious head injuries,” Mr. Hong said.
But Ngim Nheng, chief of the CNRP working group in Pursat province, said the charge was unfair.
“I think the charge is too severe for our official because this is a traffic accident and the victim just got injured,” he said. “The court is using this case for a political reason.”
Mr. Hong said Mr. Senghurt faced one to three years in prison and a fine of up to 15 million riel, or about $3,750, on a charge of “escaping from the accident scene to avoid being held responsible” under the Traffic Law.
Mr. Senghurt was arrested on Saturday in Phnom Kravanh district, about 40 km from where the boy, Nat Sovandy, was struck by an SUV in Veal Veng district’s Pramoy commune. The child sustained a cracked skull and cut knees, his mother Sok Sreyna said on Sunday. She had declined to file a complaint against Mr. Senghurt, who agreed to pay compensation of about $575, she said.
Heng Donin, chief of the provincial court secretariat, said Mr. Senghurt was being held in the provincial