The Cambodian authorities must release housing rights activist Yorm Bopha who was imprisoned after an unfair trial, Amnesty International said ahead of her appeal hearing this week.
On 27 December 2012, the Municipal Court in Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh convicted Yorm Bopha, 31, for “intentional violence with aggravating circumstances”, sentencing her to three years’ imprisonment.
She was accused of planning an assault on two men in August 2012. But during the trial witness testimonies were inconsistent, sometimes conflicting with each other, and some witnesses admitted to being intoxicated when the alleged crime occurred.
“The lack of credible evidence against Yorm Bopha suggests that the charges were baseless and she should not have been convicted. Yorm Bopha should be released immediately and unconditionally,” said Isabelle Arradon, Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia Pacific Director.
”Yorm Bopha is one of an increasing number of Cambodian human rights defenders who have faced harassment, spurious legal action and violence over the past year.”