As scheduled, the examination of witnesses testifying about the Accused Person’s Character commenced this week. The proceedings saw the attendance of expert psychologists as well as former friends and colleagues of the Accused. The psychologists explained that the analysis they had employed when examining Duch utilized a “geopolitical method” of assessment, which took into account the social and political context at the time the alleged crimes were committed. Through the application of this approach, they found that the Accused strategically adopted a non-empathic approach to ensure his own survival. He also employed tight psychological compartmentalization in dealing with different aspects of his life. They provided this as an explanation as to why Duch could be both a good family man and the director of a Security Office under whose supervision thousands had been tortured and murdered. Aside from these tendencies, which the experts attested were also found in many of the survivors of the regime, they found the Accused was not suffering from any mental disorder. This indicated that he was competent to stand for trial.
Read the report:
KRT Trial Monitor C001 Issue No. 20 – Hearing on Evidence (Week Ending 4 September 2009) corresponds with Duch on Trial Episode 19
English – Khmer