ECCC Reparations

This blog is designed to serve as a repository of analyses, news reports and press releases related to the issue of RERAPATIONS within the framework of the Extraordinary Chambers in Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), a.k.a. the Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Deputy Prosecutor Sok Kalyan Closes the Investigation into Alleged Corruption/Sean Visoth's Powers of Persuasion

Lawyers for the former high-level official of Democratic Kampuchea, Noun Chea, filed a case alleging corruption in the ranks of the ECCC and arguing that such corruption has adversely affected the rights of their client. The Prosecutor's Office of Phnom Penh dutifully ordered an investigation of the allegations in question. Just when the lists of potential witnesses were drawn up the Prosecutor's Office was visited by the ECCC's Chief of Administration, Sean Visoth, who submitted the documents which had been in the public domain for a significant period of time and which nonetheless managed to have such a tremendous effect on the Prosecutor that he declared the case closed due to the lack of incriminating evidence. The Cambodia Daily quoted Deputy Prosecutor Sok Kalyan as saying that "there is no evidence pointing to who bribed and who received the bribes". It is no wonder that no such evidence has come to the attention of the Prosecutor's Office because that would have required an investigation far more thorough than a chat with one "witness". One cannot help but wonder why Sean Visoth was even named as a witness in such investigation as he would be the one whose fiduciary responsibility could have been called into question had a conventional investigation been conducted. It is doubly curious why the Prosecutor's Office chose not to summon conventional witnesses which could have been persons who had come forward with the accusations of corrupt practices in the first place. Instead, the Prosecutor was so entirely convinced by the unspecified arguments put forward by Sean Visoth and the documents which the Prosecutor could have obtained from the ECCC's website and for the delivery of which Sean Visoth's visit was hardly necessary. With persuasion powers of this magnitude Sean Visoth might not be living up to the full potential of his talent and should try himself in something that requires advanced rhetorical skills such as, say, the practice of law. Only he might already know too well that that advanced rhetorical skills is not how one throws the eloquent prose of a submission of the likes of Koppe and Pestman.


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