A Cambodian official says an Australian filmmaker is awaiting deportation after receiving a royal pardon following his conviction on spying charges for flying a drone over a political rally. A spokesman for immigration police says James Ricketson will be deported on Saturday a day after being released from prison.
He was sentenced to six years in a trial his sympathisers described as farcical because prosecutors never specified whom he was spying for and failed to present evidence that he possessed or transmitted any secrets. He had been detained without bail since June last year in harsh conditions.
His pardon is the latest in a series of releases of political prisoners by Prime Minister Hun Sen after his party’s landslide victory in an election that critics and observers said was flawed.