Thursday, July 15, 2010

Khaou Chuly's Wife - where is the justice

20 years and 21st Century, but 20th century judiciary
Hello there

Am blogging for the first time. So bear with me pls.

I am astounded as to how far Cambodia has come, since the 1991 Paris Peace accord, the end of the scrouge of the Khmer Rouge.
Many calls, years and repeated attempts to end the culture of impunity has brought about contrasting results. Development has brought about its own set of issues. Impunity reigns.
The latest case in Point is the arrest of the wife of Khaou Chuly on allegedly masterminding the attempted rape and murder of her step daughter and step daughter in law. That the alleged intended victim could identify the supposed would-be assailants is astonishing. She must have super chilled ice water running through her veins to have identified the victims so meticulously to the extend she could describe the body hair – legs and head, size of the foot etc. There was no panic. She also went back to sleep or bed for more than two hours before reporting the would be or alleged incident to the police, her husband.
One wonders what this is all about. Is it a case of family squabble for Khaou Chuly's fortune? Is it meant to be a serial killing as alleged or speculated by some? The jury is out. However, the practice of arresting/detaining people supposedly because they would flee the country is insane and limp.
When the rich can be subdued because of greed and abuse of power by their own family owners, one wonders the fate of the common people who have no access to power, position or money.
Is Khaou Chuly's wife a cruel mastermind for planning a series of murder - serial murder or is she a victim of a family squabble turned bad? Family squabble of a powerful politician, feared by many, respected by a few, hated by even more and branded a traitor by some veteran politicians..
Lets see how this is played out. Its amazing that a Government lawyer represents a civilian in a penal case. Does the Government provide lawyers to those who cant afford them, like in the United States? Is this not an abuse of privilege and power/authority?
In law, only the question of law, evidence and witnesses count. However, during the investigation process, time-line and common sense leading to the time line counts equally as much as evidence. Intent must be proven, not alleged or assumed!
Though any detailed comments could be deemed prejudicial to investigations and a trial if any, a few questions to be posed are:
1) Why did the alleged victim wait until more than two hours later to report the alleged crime
2) How could she be so meticulous on the would be assailants description?
3) Did the said event even take place?
4) How could the would be victim use a Government lawyer?
5) Was there a warrant for the arrest of the so called plotter?
6) Is this about family heritance and fortune and the greed for it?
7) Was the investigations carried out or being carried out in the proper manner?
8) Is Khaou Chully’s wife capable of fleeing the country?
9) Was she even about to flee? If so, how come she was at home?
10) Were proper procedures followed leading to her detention?

Justice must be done to the accused and the accuser. If the accuser has fabricated the events, then she too must be punished to the full extend of the law. If the plotter is guilty with full evidence, let her face justice. Lets see!!! The summary of the above is that Impunity is still very much in existence in Cambodia, especially where the powerful are concerned. The practice of settling rape cases, murder, accidents and other criminal activities such as shooting out of court or just because the victim was compensated so nothing to investigate, must be eliminated. Impunity must be nipped. Rule of law must prevail with proper investigative measures and judicial practices in place. There cannot be two sets of law: one for the rich and powerful and one for the poor and weak. Even in the case of Khaou Chully, God Bless him, a kind soul and family patriarch, his wealth and political patronage and fidelity, came to naught when compared to the scheming son in law of his.