PHNOM PENH, May 2 (Xinhua) — A Cambodian court on Monday charged five human rights defenders and an officer of UN's human rights office in Cambodia with either bribing or conspiring to bribe a witness to tell a lie, a court spokesman said.

The five people include local rights group Adhoc's head of monitoring Ny Sokha, his deputies Nay Vanda and Yi Soksan, its senior investigator Lim Mony and former Adhoc senior official Ny Chakrya, who currently serves as the deputy secretary-general of the National Election Committee (NEC).

And the UN officer was identified as Sally Soen.

"The court has charged four Adhoc officers with bribing a witness to tell a lie and the two others —former Adhoc officer Ny Chakrya and UN officer Sally Soen — with conspiring to bribe the witness,"Phnom Penh Municipal Court's spokesman and deputy prosecutor Ly Sophanna told Xinhua.

He said under the charges, they could serve a prison term of between five and 10 years if convicted.

The Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) arrested the five human rights defenders last Thursday as the UN officer is still on the run.

Their arrests were made as a result of claims by Srey Mom, an alleged mistress of deputy opposition party leader and lawmaker Kem Sokha, that they convinced her to deny her sexual relationship with Sokha.

Last Wednesday, the ACU also arrested an opposition commune chief for allegedly paying Srey Mom 500 U.S. dollars to lie and say that she and Sokha had not had an affair.

After two months of denials, 25-year-old hairdresser Srey Mom admitted last month of having an affair with Sokha during questioning at the municipal court.

She accused the commune chief, Adhoc officers, and the UN officer of persuading her to tell a lie in order to protect Sokha' s reputation.

The alleged sex scandal between Srey Mom and Sokha came to light in February when leaked audio clips of telephone conversation between them went viral on the Internet. In the clips, they discussed sex, pregnancy and paying for an apartment.

Since the scandal broke out, Sokha has not publicly commented on the veracity of the audio recordings; instead, he advised supporters not to respond to provocations.