Monday, November 25, 2013

Defamation suits follow NGO report

May Titthara, The Phnom Penh Post
Sun, 24 November 2013

Tycoon Try Pheap has filed a defamation complaint against two people quoted in an NGO report released last week that accused him of illegal logging and widespread land grabbing, summonses obtained yesterday reveal.

The documents, bearing the signature of Kandal Provincial Court prosecutor Sam Rithy Veasna, are dated Friday.

This is only two days after the Cambodian Human Rights Task Force alleged in a report that Pheap’s land empire, built on government concessions, had expanded to more than 70,000 hectares, displacing at least 1,445 families and facilitating an illegal-logging syndicate.

Sen San and Ouk Sambo, from Kandal province’s Kandal Stung district, close to where Pheap has a residence, have been ordered to appear for questioning in the provincial court on Friday morning.

“All I said was that he is rich and is a timber businessman. But I have been accused of defamation,” San said yesterday. “I fear this summons – because he is rich and powerful. Even though we are in the right, we won’t be able to win this case. But I will show up as scheduled.”
San, a Cambodia National Rescue Party representative in the commune, said the complaint may also relate to his political alliances.

“What they are doing is intimidating me. Trying to make me afraid,” he said.

Pheap, the director of the MDS Import-Export company, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

A company representative, who spoke to the Post last week about the allegations in the CHRTF report, said he knew nothing of the defamation complaints.

CHRTF director Ouch Leng, who compiled the report, said the summonses were an example of the company trying to use the courts to threaten those who spoke “the truth”.

“This is the company’s culture,” he said. “The rich and powerful are always using the judicial system to suppress and discourage people. This must stop in the fifth mandate – the government has pledged reforms.”

Sok Sam Oeun, director of the Cambodian Defenders Project, said that if the summonses do relate to the two villagers’ comments in the report, it is unusual that police have not investigated the matter first.

“In this case, only the court has taken action following the complaint,” he said.

CHRTF’s report claims that 1,445 families have been evicted from their homes during Pheap’s acquisition of about 68,088 hectares since 2010.

By law, an individual can own only 10,000 hectares of economic land concessions in Cambodia.

CHRTF said it used a team of investigators across the country to monitor the activities of Pheap’s companies, which it alleges number 15 and are registered under either his or his wife’s name.

The NGO alleges it has seen company officials selling illegally felled timber, primarily rosewood, to dealers operating in Vietnam.

“The main business and politics of tycoon Try Pheap is to operate a timber business under the cloak of ELCs and … transport wood openly from Cambodia to Vietnam,” Leng told the Post last week.

Rithy Veasna, the provincial court prosecutor, could not be reached for comment.


Anonymous said...

Pourquoi le tribunal khmer n a pas fait une l enquête auprès de Mr try pheap? Au lieu convoqué les 2 innocents pour menacer.
Cette tactique est vraiment minable que le tribunal khmer à phnom penh utilise depuis près de 30 ans, et toujours les mêmes choses.
Le tribunal est une arme que youn a choisi pour menacés, et opprimés contre le peuple khmer qu il ose de parler la vérité sur les actions youn, et les projets youn d éliminer la nation khmer.

Anonymous said...

Burn down Ah Prett Try Pheap's cutting trees equipments and trucks.'

Anonymous said...

បើតុលារខ្មែរពិិតជាឯករាជ្យ ពិតជាយុត្តិធម៌ ពិត
ជាស្អាតស្អំមែន ពួកទុច្ចរិតវាមិនហ៊ានក្អេងក្អាង
រត់ទៅតុលាការប្តឹង ក្រុម NGO នោះទេ ។ ពួកអា
ខាងលើវាត្រូវតែគាំទ្រជនទុច្ចរិតនេះ ហើយ
ជម្រុញឲជនទុច្ចរិតនេះប្តឹងទៅ ពួកវានៅចាំជួយ
ពីក្រោយ ។ ព្រោះតុលាជារបស់ពួកវាស្រាប់ មានអ្វីដែលត្រូវខ្លាចទៀត ?។ អ្នកតូច ទាប គ្មានប្រាក់ គ្មានអំណាចធ្វើម្ត៉េចយកឈ្នះពួកវា
បាន ? មិនខុសពីមនុស្សលោក ធ្វើម្ត៉េចអាចយក
ឈ្នះពួកព្រាយបីសាចឃោឃៅព្រៃផ្សៃបាន ? ។
ក្រុមហ៊ុនទុច្ចរិតទាំងនេះសុទ្ធតែជារបស់ពួកថ្នាក់លើគណៈបក្ស CPP ទាំងអស់ពួកវាធ្វើម្ត៉េចនឹង
ទុកឲមតិមហាជនបកអាក្រាត និង ដាក់ទោស
បាន ? ។ អ្វី ៗ ពួកវារៀបចំរួចអស់ទៅហើយ
ភស្តុតាង និង សាក្សីពិតប្រាកដបានត្រូវបំផ្លាញ
ចោល ហើយ បង្កើត និង ប្រឌិត ភស្តុតាង និង សាក្សីក្លែងក្លាយមកបង្ហា្លញតុលាការ​ និង​សាធារ
ណៈជនវិញ ។ នេះគឺជាប្រពៃណិយរបស់ពួកវា
ទៅហើយ សូម្បីតែជាមួយតុលាការអន្តរៈជាតិក៍
ពួកធ្វើបែបហ្នឹងដែរ ។

បើមិនផ្លាស់ប្តូរទេ ប្រទេសខ្មែរនៅតែគ្មានយុត្តិធម៌
រហូតតរៀងទៅ គ្មានទីបញ្ចាប់ឡើយ ។

Anonymous said...

No worry, these monkeys will fly out back to Veitnam soon .

Khmer Inquirer.