Long Beach resident held political prisoner in Cambodia is released

A Long Beach man who had been jailed in Cambodia for years after what many considered a sham court proceeding has been released from a notorious foreign prison.

Meach Sovannara, a former spokesman for the opposition Cambodian National Rescue Party who had been jailed for speaking at a 2014 political protest in the nation’s capital, was released early Tuesday morning in Phnom Penh, according to Bo K.S. Uce, a political activist in Long Beach and family friend.

In July 2015, Sovannara and 10 others were convicted of various crimes connected to the protests after what human rights activists have called a “show trial.” Sovannara’s attorneys were not allowed to make closing arguments and justices deliberated for 15 minutes before returning with a conviction, according to Amnesty International.

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