The Supreme Court today heard the case of Cambodia’s disgraced former ambassador to South Korea, Suth Dina, as whether his appeal hearing over his abuse of power and exploiting his position would be allowed to proceed.
In December 2016, the Phnom Penh Municipal court found Mr Dina guilty and sentenced him to five years in prison on charges of abuse of power and unlawful exploitation and fined him 10 million riel, or about $2,500.
After being sentenced, Mr Dina was dissatisfied with the decision and appealed it through his three lawyers, but the court of appeal refused to have a hearing on January 13, 2017 given that Mr Dina failed to transfer his rights in written papers with his signature to his three lawyers.
A political chameleon who had hopped between opposition movements and ruling parties, Mr. Dina worked for the Foreign Affairs Ministry and as a personal adviser to Prime Minister Hun Sen before landing the ambassadorship in Seoul in 2014
Mr Dina’s lawyer Kim Mengkhy told the Supreme Court judges that in the previous time, even there was no written letter from Mr Dina, lawyers could represent him.
“The appeal court refused to have his appeal hearing given that it did not have the transferring letter of rights from his client is not suitable,” Mr Mengkhy said, asking the court to release his client on bail because of his health problem.
Mr Dina said that he had thump-printed a letter for his lawyers to appeal, but noted that he was unclear if his former lawyers followed the procedures or because he did not understood the court’s procedure.
Looking pale and skinny during the hearing, Mr Dina said that he should be released on bail because he had health problem such as high cholesterol, fat around heart and high blood pressure and did nothing harmful to the society.
Full story on Thursday’s paper