Former S-21 Prison Chief Duch in Hospital

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia – A Khmer Rouge-era jailer who was the first to be convicted in an ongoing Cambodian war crimes tribunal is ill in hospital, a prison official told Agence France-Presse (AFP) Wednesday, October 24.

Kaing Guek Eav, better known as Duch, is serving out a life sentence for his role in managing a Phnom Penh detention center where thousands were incarcerated, tortured and sent to their deaths in nearby “Killing Fields.”

The “factory of death” called S-21 was at the heart of the security apparatus of the Khmer Rouge, an ultra-Maoist regime that ruled from 1975-1979 and killed almost a quarter of the population through enslavement, overwork and execution.

Duch was sent to a prison in Cambodia’s Kandal province after an appeal extended his original decades-long sentence to life in 2012.

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