Businessman Hacked With Meat Cleaver at Airport

A man accused of hacking a businessman with a meat cleaver outside the Phnom Penh International Airport was to be sent to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Saturday for questioning, police said.

Keo Sitha, 50, an assistant to Ing Bun Hoaw, chairman of ING Holdings, was injured in the unprovoked attack around 9 a.m. on Thursday, Pur Senchey district police chief Yim Saran said on Friday.

Photos supplied by police show Mr. Sitha with deep gashes to the head and hand. He was hospitalized and receiving treatment for his injuries on Friday and was expected to make a full recovery, Mr. Sarah said.

“The suspect confessed to hacking [the victim] because he felt like he wanted to hack someone, and that morning he saw the victim who had a similar look to someone that he wanted to hack,” Mr. Saran said.

The mother of the alleged attacker, Keo Phearum, 25, told police her son had a history of mental illness, he said.

Police had originally identified the attacker as an employee of the airport, but Khek Norinda, a communications director at the airport, on Saturday said the man had no link with the airport. “He is an employee of a private transportation company who came at the airport to pick up a guest,” Mr. Norinda wrote in an email.

In a statement released on Friday, ING Holdings spoke of the company’s shock at the attack.

“We are obviously shocked and saddened by this savage and unprovoked attack on one of our senior staff members. Our thoughts are with his friends and family as we wish him a full and speedy recovery,” the statement said.

“We will be working closely with the authorities to determine the facts behind this shocking attack and will of course pursue justice for our colleague and friend.”

Correction: This version of the story corrects the employment of the alleged attacker and adds a comment from the airport’s communications direction.

phearun@cambodiadaily.com 

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