Prisoners Approved for Sentence Cuts and Pardon Request 

Photo: Directorate General of Prisons

PHNOM PENH – As many as 689 requests were made for sentence reduction and pardons for prisoners across the country on national and religious holidays in 2024. 

The Directorate General of Prisons (GDP) said on May 13 that the National Commission to Review and Request Sentence Reductions and Pardons had opened a discussion, joined by Justice Minister Koeut Rith and GDP director-general Chhorn Sanath. 

The commission decided to put only 485 prisoners, including 38 females, forward for the Prime Minister to review. The requests will then be submitted to the King to grant the pardons. 

Of these, 334 prisoners asked for a three-months reduction, 130 for six months, 15 for nine months and five for 12 months. One asked for a pardon. 

Sentence reduction and pardons are normally requested on major national and religious days, including the victorious day against the Khmer Rouge regime, Khmer New Year, Visak Bochea, Independence Day and the Water Festival. 

These aim to allow prisoners who can be pardoned or whose jail term can be reduced to re-integrate with society, based on humanitarian principle. 

Eligible prisoners must have been sentenced by a final verdict or judgment of the court. 

They are considered only if they have changed their mindset and behavior to become a citizen with integrity to live in society again and have obeyed the prison rules and are good role models for other prisoners. 

Their requests are also taken into account if they have actively and punctually joined rehabilitation programs, technical training courses and re-integration programs and have acted in line with instructions in the prison.

Heads of capital-provincial prisons are in charge of evaluating the performance of prisoners who have met the criteria for jail term reduction and pardons, filing documents, and submitting to the capital-provincial commission and to the GDP for review and another evaluation on each prisoner’s character. 


Meng Seavmey contributed to the story.

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