By: Phak Seangly
A Malaysian couple was sentenced to death on Friday for the 2012 murder of their Cambodian maid, whom they had starved and abused.
Chew Tong, 46, and his wife Chin Chui Ling, 43, were sentenced by the Court of Appeal to death by hanging for murdering 23-year-old Mey Sichan from Kampong Thom province.
According to Malaysian newspaper the Star, the court heard how Sichan was denied food for a long period of time.
The cause of death was “acute peritonitis due to a perforated gastric ulcer associated with abuses and neglect”, it said.
Cambodia’s Labour Ministry yesterday welcomed the verdict, which it said would help to prevent further abuses of its domestic workers.
“It is an example for other employers who are abusing their maids. It means the Malaysian government does not turn a blind eye to abuses of foreign workers,” said the ministry’s spokesman, Heng Sour.
Moeun Tola, head of the labour program at local NGO Community Legal Education Centre, said that the agencies responsible for sending Sichan to Malaysia should also be investigated.
“If the investigation finds that the agencies refused to help Mey Sichan, they must be brought [to] court like [the couple] and punished so that they will not evade justice,” he said.
MLC Labor Supply Company Co Ltd, which recruited Sichan, could not be reached for comment yesterday.
The government is currently preparing to end its ban on sending domestic workers to Malaysia, which it established in 2011 amid reports of abuse.
Sour said yesterday that he was unsure when the new agreement between the two countries would be signed.
SOURCE: THE PHNOM PENH