Human Rights

Citing Lack of Faith in Courts, Brother Pulls Murder Complaint

Brother of slain activist Chea Vichea said he no longer believes the judiciary can provide justice for the murder of his brother.

Labor leader Chea Mony drops murder complaint of his bother Chea Vichea.
Labor leader Chea Mony drops murder complaint of his bother Chea Vichea.
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Kong Sothanarith
— The head of the Free Trade Union and brother of slain activist Chea Vichea has withdrawn a complaint from the court, saying he no longer believes the judiciary can provide justice for the murder of his brother. 
 
Chea Mony, who took over the union after his brother was shot and killed in 2004, told VOA Khmer he no longer has confidence in the court system, following a decision by the Appeals Court this week to remand two men to prison despite their apparent innocence.
 
The men, Born Samnang and Sok Samoeun, are serving 20-year sentences for the crime, convicted hastily in 2004 despite a clear lack of evidence. 
 
“They are not the real murderers,” Chea Mony said Tuesday. “And I don’t believe I’ve been delivered justice, because they are not the perpetrators.” He will refile the complaint once the two men are released from jail, he said. 
 
Chea Vichea was shot dead outside a row of newspaper stands near the Wat Langka pagoda in January 2004. Leading the murder investigation was Heng Pov, then the chief of Phnom Penh police, who has since been convicted of a raft of serious crimes, including ordering murders, and is likely to serve the rest of his life in prison. 
 
Chea Mony said Heng Pov could identify the killers, as could the the newspaper vendors near where he was shot.
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