Ahead of the hearing in the case of Rath Rott Mony at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court today, Nicholas Bequelin, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for East and Southeast Asia said:
“Mony is being punished solely for his role in exposing the horrors of child sexual exploitation in Cambodia. The bogus charges against him are designed to intimidate anyone whose work contribute to exposing this scourge – and the government’s woeful inaction.
“The authorities should drop the prosecution of Rath Rott Mony and release him immediately and unconditionally.”
Rath Rott Mony, 47, is an English-Khmer translator from Phnom Penh.
In 2017 he was hired to work on My Mother Sold Me, a documentary from the news network Russia Today (RT) exposing the sexual exploitation of children in Cambodia. He had previously worked on several other documentaries produced by RT.
The Cambodian government criticised the documentary and called it inaccurate when it aired in September 2018. Fearing prosecution from the government, Rath Rott Mony and his family fled to Thailand to seek asylum.
The Thai government arrested and deported him back to Cambodia in December 2018, where he was charged with “incitement to discriminate”. He faces up to a year in prison if convicted.