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Lawyer of Torture Chief Urges Speedy Trial

The lawyer of Kaing Khek Iev, the Khmer Rouge torture chief known also known as Duch, appealed Friday for a speedy tribunal process so that his client could see a trial.

Lawyer Ka Savuth said his client had been held many years without trial and urged the jurists of the tribunal to "please hurry."

International and Cambodian jurists last week agreed on internal rules that will govern the Khmer Rouge tribunal, paving the way for trials of the regime's top leaders.

Duch, 64, was the Khmer Rouge's lead interrogator at the S-21 Tuol Sleng torture center in Phnom Penh. Under his watch, as many as 16,000 Cambodians were tortured and executed, their bodies dumped at the Choeung Ek "killing fields" outside the capital.

Duch was arrested in May 1999 and has been awaiting trial ever since.