Woman Admits to Kidnapping Baby for Ransom

Phnom Penh police arrested a 33-year-old woman on Thursday for allegedly kidnapping her friend’s baby in a failed attempt to extort ransom, police said on Sunday.

Yin Sotheara confessed to stealing the 5-month-old child, said Sok Sophal, police chief of Sen Sok district’s Toek Thla commune.

Ms. Sotheara visited a close friend at 8 p.m. on Wednesday evening, and when the friend went upstairs, she taped the baby’s mouth, put the baby into a plastic bag and took the child home, Mr. Sophal said.

The mother’s frantic calls to the suspect as well as neighbors scared Ms. Sotheara, who set out at 4 a.m. the next day to a garbage dump, he said.

“The suspect left the baby on a bed near the garbage, then drove back home.”

Neighbors who were suspicious of Ms. Sotheara had followed her and called police.

Ms. Sotheara initially said she had acted out of love for the child, but later admitted she planned to extort money, Mr. Sophal said.

He did not know if the baby was a boy or girl.

Yim Davuth, deputy district police chief, said the suspect had been sent to court for questioning.

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