PHNOM PENH: A Cambodian court has jailed three people, including a top police general, for more than a year for violating Covid-19 restrictions by attending a party, a court official said on Friday.
Major-General Ung Chanthuok, deputy chief of staff of the national police, was sentenced on Thursday to 12 months in prison over a party he organised earlier this month, while two other attendees received 18-month terms. Ung Chanthuok was sacked after his arrest.
Kuch Kimlong, deputy prosecutor of the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, said all three were also fined US$1,250 each.
The sentences were among the toughest so far under a strict law passed in March this year by Cambodia’s parliament, which prescribes punishments that include jail terms of three years for quarantine breaches and 10 years for leaving treatment facilities while infected, or intentionally spreading Covid-19.
Cambodia is fighting a surge in coronavirus infections that has seen its case total jump from about 500 to 12,641 since late February, including all 91 of its deaths.
Its capital is on a tough lockdown, with residents banned from leaving their homes. Some have complained of hunger from lack of income and inadequate food aid distribution.
Cambodian police last week defended the arrest and beating of lockdown violators with rattan canes, saying the measures aimed to save lives.