Trial of chief torturer starts

As the trial of the chief torturer of the Khmer Rouge begins in Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh, the sister of the regime’s only British victim – an innocent yachtsman – is relieved her brother’s killer is being brought to justice.

Teacher John Dewhirst,26, had taken time out from his job in Japan in 1978 to go sailing with two pals aboard their Chinese junk, Foxy Lady. She drifted into Cambodian waters and the three were arrested by paranoid Khmer Rouge soldiers. He was incarcerated in the regime’s notorious S-21 jail where he was tortured into signing a confession that he was a CIA spy.

He was then beaten to death with an iron bar.

Now, lead torturer Comrade Duch, 66, is alone among the defendants in expressing remorse and has agreed to co-operate with the tribunal.