Last Khmer Rouge leaders get life sentences

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) — An international tribunal that found two former Khmer Rouge leaders guilty of genocide has sentenced them to life in prison.

The elderly Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan are the last surviving senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge and are already serving life sentences for the regime’s forced transfers and disappearances of masses of people during group’s brutal rule of Cambodia in the late 1970s.

The tribunal convicted Khieu Samphan under the joint criminal enterprise rule of the genocide law. It found Nuon Chea guilty of genocide based on the principle of command responsibility.

The separate verdicts involve killings of the Cham and Vietnamese ethnic groups committed as the radical group brutally ruled Cambodia and starved, overworked and executed its own perceived enemies.