Prince Norodom Ranariddh has requested clemency from his father, retired King Norodom Sihanouk, following the Appeal Court’s Oct 3 decision to uphold the breach of trust verdict and 18-month prison sentence.
In a letter dated Oct 6 and obtained Monday evening, Prince Ranariddh wrote from his home in Malaysia to the retired King describing the charge and court verdict as “politically motivated.”
“I am a victim of a serious injustice that the court sentenced me and told me to pay $150,000 in compensation for a crime I did not commit,” he wrote.
“I am not a traitor, I did not abuse human rights and I do not have blood on my hands,” Prince Ranariddh continued.
“I would like Papa to consider giving me justice because you constantly have given clemency and justice to your children,” the prince wrote.
In response to the letter, the retired King wrote Oct 9 that he hoped his son would overcome his difficulties.
“Samdech Krom Preah [Prince Ranariddh] is a patriot who succeeded in fulfilling a mission with Samdech [Prime Minister] Hun Sen to serve the nation’s interests, the monarchy and democracy,” the retired King wrote. “I hope that Samdech Krom Preah’s grief will be finished soon.”
Funcinpec spokesman Nouv Sovathero said Prince Ranariddh had authored his own misfortune, adding however, that Funcinpec could withdraw the case if the prince rejoins the party he once led.
“When he returns to Funcinpec the grief will be finished,” he said.
Norodom Ranariddh Party spokesman Muth Channtha said Tuesday that Funcinpec’s offer was hollow as the party cannot nullify a court verdict.
“Funcinpec has no right to eliminate verdicts,” he said.
The retired King has already given justice to the prince by saying that he is a patriot, Muth Channtha said, adding that Norodom Sihanouk also did not mention the prince having to return to Funcinpec. “The prince wants justice from the retired King. The retired King has given justice to the prince,” he said.