A Funcinpec official arrested last week led a cell of Cambodian Freedom Fighters and was planning a grenade ambush on a Koh Kong province military installation, an Interior Ministry official alleged last week.
Sou Kim, 50, was arrested Feb 13 in Pailin municipality on charges of organized crime. He ran as the royalist party’s number two candidate for Pailin in last year’s elections. He was linked to the CFF—a US-based anti-communist group bent on overthrowing Prime Minister Hun Sen’s government—through confessions from four suspects arrested in November, said Sok Phal, chief of the ministry’s Central Investigation Department.
Sok Phal said Sou Kim has been involved with the CFF for about a year and planned to attack a military base in Koh Kong.
“He was one of the leaders,” he said. He added that Sou Kim was planning the attack without support from Funcinpec.
The CFF is blamed for a failed attack on the capital in November 2000. Ke Chamroeun, a Cambodian Defenders Project lawyer, said he would be assigned to the case but has not yet met with Sou Kim.
Sou Kim is being detained at Prey Sar prison. His sister, Sou Mom, said Monday that he is innocent of the charges.
At its prime, the CFF had an estimated force of 300, but it has since been cut to between 30 and 50, Sok Phal said. He said the group had members in the areas of Pailin and Koh Kong.