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Former Khmer Rouge Commander Retrial

The Phnom Penh Court of Appeals heard Sam Bith's case on Friday for the second time, but says it will not announce the verdict until December 5.

As Khmer Rouge Regional Commander, Sam Bith was found guilty of committing terrorist attacks on a train in Kampot province. He was later found guilty of the ambush, which killed more than 10 people, and led to the kidnapping and execution of 3 foreign backpackers.

Sam Bith was sentenced to life in prison and ordered to pay financial compensation to the victim’s families. Nou Chantha, lawyer to Sam Bith, protested the court’s decision, and claimed that his client was tried in absentia. He then filed another appeal.

Nearly three years after, the Phnom Penh Court of Appeal took a second look at the case. However, Nu Chantha maintains that his client is innocent and urges the court to release his client.

Meanwhile, Lim Eng Ratanak, a legal representative of the victim’s families appeal to the court to uphold its original sentence.

Sam Bith, 73, is currently being treated in Monivong Hospital.