Drug Dealer Confesses at Trial Following Shootout

A 37-year-old man whose April arrest led to a fatal raid admitted at trial on Thursday that he had trafficked methamphetamine pills, while two co-defendants claimed they were roast duck meat vendors who were mistakenly caught along with a ring of drug dealers.

At the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday, Ly Virak admitted to dealing drugs, specifically pills made from methamphetamine and caffeine.

After his arrest on April 27, Mr. Virak led police to a villa in Phnom Penh’s Tuol Kok district where a shootout ensued, leaving military police officer Tien Karuna and one of Mr. Varak’s associates, Lim Teng, 36, dead.

Mr. Virak pleaded guilty to dealing drugs during Thursday’s trial, but denied knowing his co-defendants, Ly Kokhuy, 64; Ty Eang, 45; Sun Daro, 23; and Trav Ritheara, 18. Mr. Kokhuy and Mr. Eang—both accused of drug trafficking, joining a criminal group and illegally possessing weapons—denied the charges.

They said they were merely grilling their meat behind the villa.

The trial resumes on November 25.

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