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Drug traffickers appeal for reduced sentences

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea / Khmer Times Share:
The accused are taken away from the court. KT/Pann Rachana

The Court of Appeal yesterday heard the case of two men convicted by Kampong Thom Provincial Court last year and sentenced to five years each in jail for drug use and trafficking in Stung Sen city.


Presiding Judge Kim Dany identified them as Yem Yo, 43, and Hem Sokney, 34, who were both construction workers living in Kampong Thom province’s Stung Sen city.

Judge Dany said they were charged with drug use and trafficking after they were arrested by provincial anti-drug police in Stung Sen city in June last year.

She noted that at about 4.30pm on June 5 last year, provincial anti-drug police arrested Mr Yo in a guesthouse in Stung Sen commune.

“The accused Mr Yo was arrested by provincial anti-drug trafficking police when he was smoking the drug inside a room in the guesthouse,” Judge Dany said. “After the arrest, police seized two packages of crystal methamphetamine weighing 25 grams, one phone as well as other related drug materials from him.”

Judge Dany added that Mr Yo’s confession led to the arrest of Mr Sokney, who sold him the drugs, at about 10am on the next day in his rental house in Stung Sen commune. Police seized 13 small packages of crystal meth weighing 30 grams, one motorbike and one phone from him.

Judge Dany noted that following their arrests, police conducted urine tests, which both came back positive for drug use.

Both men were convicted by Kampong Thom Provincial Court on November 28 last year and sentenced to five years each in jail. The court also ordered them to pay about $1,000 each to put into the state budget.

Judge Dany noted that both men appealed for a reduced sentence to the Appeal Court.

During yesterday’s trial, the two accused men admitted committing the offence and requested that their sentences be reduced from five years to two years and six months each in prison.

Mr Yo told the court that he had been using drugs for more than three years prior to his arrest. He added that the drugs seized, which he bought for $200 from Mr Sokney, was for his personal use and not to be distributed or sold to anyone.

“I confess that I was a drug user, but not a drug trafficker,” Mr Yo said. “But I have not used any drugs since I was arrested and I promise that I will not do it again.”

“I would like to request that the court reduce my sentence from five years to two years and six months in jail so that I will be able to return to my family once I am out,” he added.

Mr Sokney confessed that he was also a drug user. He told the court that he had bought the drugs seized for the price of $300 from an unidentified man, which he then split into small packages to re-sell.

Mr Sokney said that before he was arrested, he bought drugs from the unidentified man four times, each time for the price of $300. He added that he could earn about $50 to $75 for re-selling the drugs.

Mr Sokney also requested that the court reduced his sentence by half.

A verdict is due on July 25.

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