Friday, August 20, 2010
As reported earlier, the Co-Prosecutors for the Extraordinary Courts of the Chambers of Cambodia (ECCC) have filed an appeal of the Trial Chamber's judgment against Kaing Guek Eav (also known as "Duch"). This post sets out the three grounds of appeal in the co-prosecutors' notice of appeal.
The ECCC Trial Chamber issued its judgment on July 26, 2010, sentencing Kaing Guek Eav to 35 years imprisonment, but giving him credit for 11 years already served and a further reduction of five years because he had been illegally held without charges for nine of the 11 years served. The co-prosecutors now appeal on three grounds.
First, the Co-Prosecutors claim that the Trial Chamber gave insufficient weight to the gravity of the crimes, his role and willing participation in those crimes, and other aggravating circumstances. The Co-Prosecutors also said that the Trial Chamber gave undue weight to mitigating circumstances. The Co-Prosecutors also stated that the sentence failed to consider the relevant international sentencing law and that the sentence imposed fell outside the range of sentences available.
Second, the Co-Prosecutors claim that the Trial Chamber erred in not issuing cumulative sentences for the crimes against humanity of enslavement, imprisonment, torture, rape, extermination, and other inhumane acts, and by subsuming those crimes in the crime against humanity of persecution on political grounds. The Co-Prosecutors also stated that the Trial Chamber erred by characterizing the crime against humanity of rape as torture, and by failing to convict him cumulatively for the distinct crimes against humanity of rape and torture.
Third, the Co-Prosecutors claim that the Trial Chamber erred in using a definition of the crime against humanity of enslavement that required forced labor as an essential element. They claim that the Trial Court erred in not sentencing Duch for the enslavement of persons who were not subjected to forced labor in the S-21 prison.