Former Couple Tried in Land Title Forgeries

Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Monday tried a former husband and wife for forgery of a private document after an NGO director accused them of a falsifying land titles, court officials said yesterday.

The complainant, Hang Borey, director of education NGO International Communities Organization of Cambodia, had also accused the couple, Ny Heng, 42, and his former wife Ing Rithea, 39, of breach of trust for defaulting on a $107,000 loan. But a lawyer for the suspects, Chea Hey, said yesterday that they were acquitted of the second charge.

According to Mr Hey, presiding Judge Ke Sakhorn did not consider this to be a criminal matter.

Ms Borey said by telephone yesterday that in 2007 Mr Heng and Ms Rithea forged land titles to a house and two hectares of land she owned in Koh Kong province’s Sre Ambel district. Ms Borey said the pair transferred the titles to themselves, and then tried to sell them to a third party. She declined to give further details of the alleged deal.

Mr Hey said the forgery charge was unfounded. He said Ms Borey had known the couple for a long time and often helped them out in business deals. He said she sold the properties to the couple for $15,000.

“My clients had a transfer certificate and a selling and buying letter,” he said. “The complainant does not have evidence against my clients.”

Deputy prosecutor Meas Chanpiseth said a verdict was expected on Dec 14. “I requested to the court to consider the evidence against them and punish them,” he said, declining to give further details.

Ms Rithea was previously convicted in another fraud and forgery case involving Ms Borey and two other complainants, for defaulting on a more than $1 million loan.

On Nov 18, Ms Rithea was sentenced to three years in jail, ordered to return the $1,090,500 she had borrowed and ordered to pay $400,000 in compensation to CPP lawmaker Chea Chamroeun, his sister-in-law Chap Bonavy and Ms Borey.


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