Court Grants Bail to Woman Charged in Moto-Taxi Stabbing

A 20-year-old woman from Svay Rieng province arrested last month for allegedly stabbing a moto-taxi driver during a botched robbery was released on bail Friday, a court official said Sunday.

According to police, Khon Srey Dy, a garment worker, attempted to rob Rin Phirom, 17, on December 25 after gambling away a loan she had obtained to pay for her upcoming wedding. When he resisted, she stabbed him in the stomach with a knife she had bought at a local market earlier in the day. On December 27, the Svay Rieng Provincial Court charged Ms. Srey Dy with theft accompanied by violence.

But she was released by the court on Friday after her family posted bail, court prosecutor Hing Bunchea said Sunday.

“We decided to release her on bail on Friday afternoon because her family paid the 4 million riel [about $1,000] bail money and because she will get married on January 15,” Mr. Bunchea said. He stressed that Ms. Srey Dy was still under investigation by the court.

Keo Sotha, chief of the provincial minor crimes police bureau who led the investigation into the case, expressed disappointment with the court’s decision, noting that the suspect confessed to the crime immediately following her arrest.

“Where is the justice for the family of the victim?” he said.

Mr. Phearom is still receiving treatment for his stab wound at the provincial referral hospital, according to Mr. Sotha.

Prak Saran, coordinator for rights group Adhoc in Svay Rieng, said Ms. Srey Dy’s parents filed a complaint with his organization following her arrest, saying their daughter only stabbed Mr. Phirom after he attempted to rape her.

“The parents of the suspect claim that their daughter was only fighting back to defend herself,” Mr. Saran said. “They are planning to file a complaint [with the court]…against the moto-taxi driver as soon as possible.”

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