PHNOM PENH —
The Court of Appeals is set to hear jailed political analyst Kim Sok’s complaint against the decision by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court to detain him, his lawyer has said.
Sok was charged with incitement and sent to pre-trial detention on February 17 after being questioned by the court of first instance.
Choung Chou Ngy, his lawyer, said the appeal would be heard on March 6.
Sok faces from six months to two years in prison for comments he made during a radio interview where he allegedly claimed that Prime Minister Hun Sen was responsible for the murder of his fellow political analyst Kem Ley last year.
Chou Ngy claimed that under the law a suspect can only be remanded into pre-trial custody if the minimum sentence they face is greater than one year.
“But for the charges on Kim Sok, the minimum sentence is not one year; it’s six months. So ... Kim Sok should not be detained,” he said.
He has also filed a bail request, he added.
Touch Tharith, appeals court spokesman, could not be reached for comment.
Ly Sophanna, municipal court spokesman, said the proper court procedures had been followed.
“The prosecutor charged Kim Sok over the offense which would lead to a maximum sentence of two years. According to articles 204 and 205 of the Criminal Code, the court can temporarily detain him,” he wrote in a message.
Hun Sen has also demanded $500,000 in compensation as part of a defamation complaint.
In another complaint, also filed by Hun Sen, he alleged Sok had improperly accused the government of involvement in several murders over the years, for which he was claiming $2,500 compensation.