On 19 December 2014, the Trial Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) issued an order, referring the misconduct of Khieu Samphan’s national Co-Lawyer Kong Sam Onn to the President of the Bar Association of the Kingdom of Cambodia, and referring the misconduct of foreign Co-Lawyers Arthur Vercken and Anta Guisse to the President of the Paris Bar Association and the Prosecutor General of the Paris Appeal Court.
The order provides details of the misconduct of Khieu Samphan’s counsel from 17 October 2014 onwards. The Trial Chamber found that counsel’s repeated violations of court orders to attend trial hearings in Case 002/02 amounts to a serious and deliberate obstruction of the proceedings. As a direct consequence of this misconduct, 25 trial days over a course of 10 weeks were cancelled, creating hardships for witnesses and Civil Parties, inconvenience for the Parties and significant additional costs for the ECCC.
The Trial Chamber found that there is no factual or legal basis justifying counsel’s misconduct. Two written filings by counsel attempting to justify their actions were considered by the Trial Chamber to be repetitious, frivolous and in support of a defence strategy that is legally groundless, inconsistent with counsel’s duties and fashioned to obstruct the proceedings in Case 002/02. Consequently, the Chamber recommended that the Defence Support Section refuse any request by the counsel for Khieu Samphan to be paid for work on these filings.
The order is available on the ECCC website: