Graham Cleghorn….victim of injustice in Cambodia?

Home > News Reports >  2006  

 





The Dominion Post
June 21 2006

Cleghorn lawyer opts out
by Matthew Torbit

The Cambodian lawyer for jailed New Zealander Graham Cleghorn has quit in "pure frustration" at the country's corrupt legal system.

The move has supporters of Cleghorn, 58, jailed for 20 years on rape charges, concerned at his chances of winning an appeal against his conviction.

Cleghorn's New Zealand-based lawyer, Greg King, said his Cambodian counterpart, Dy Borima, was due to appear at the July 10 hearing, but had quit. Mr Borima had resigned out of "pure frustration" at a corrupt legal system after unsuccessfully defending an Australian man jailed on similar sex charges to Cleghorn, he said.

Bart Lauwaert had an appeal against a 20-year jail term dismissed in a Phnom Penh court -- despite all nine complainants from his original trial recanting claims he raped them.

"We had pinned our hopes on the integrity of the Cambodian legal system, but after the recent events there is a very real concern that Graham Cleghorn will not receive justice," Mr King said.

Otago University-trained Cambodian lawyer Ock Ry had since been hired to represent Cleghorn.