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KNLF founder Sam Serey, deemed a ‘terrorist’ by gov't, detained in Thailand

KNLF founder Sam Serey, deemed a ‘terrorist’ by gov't, detained in Thailand

THURSDAY, April 26, 2018

Khmer National Liberation Front founder Sam Serey, wanted by the Cambodian government for an alleged Khmer New Year terrorism threat, has been arrested in Thailand on immigration violations, Cambodian officials said Thursday.

Serey, who has frequently been accused of violent plots by the government, was detained on Wednesday for overstaying his visa, said Khieu Sopheak, spokesman at the Ministry of Interior.

"We are considering a request for his extradition,” Sopheak said.

While more than 20 of his followers have been arrested over the years, none have ever been found armed. Serey, who received political asylum in Denmark, was sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison in 2016 for “plotting” an attack.

On April 10, Prime Minister Hun Sen claimed he had foiled yet another plan by Serey to bomb Wat Phnom and Siem Reap during Khmer New Year, although he offered little concrete evidence.

Serey, who vehemently denied the accusations, claimed at the time he had illegally crossed into Cambodia, but confirmed to The Post on Tuesday that he was in Thailand

In February, political refugee Sam Sokha – who was wanted for throwing a sandal at a billboard of Hun Sen – was deported from Thailand. The two governments recently agreed to cooperate more fully on political fugitives, raising fears for the safety of numerous opposition and civil society figures currently seeking refuge in Thailand.