Man Charged Over Fishermen Bomb Deaths

A boat pilot in Preah Sihanouk province has been charged with manslaughter and failure to report a crime after two fishermen he took to sea were killed by an illegal homemade bomb that exploded aboard their makeshift vessel, a police official said on Wednesday.

Police say Pen Leng, 29, piloted the boat from which Kol Chruk, 31, and Nam Chhayluon, 28, launched a small floating cane basket near Koh Trangorl island on Monday.

The pair was killed instantly when a bomb—made of TNT and fertilizer placed inside a can of motor oil—exploded prematurely.

Nget Phorn, the provincial penal police chief, said Mr. Leng had been charged on Tuesday with manslaughter and omitting to file a complaint against a felony by Y Kheng, the provincial judge who investigated the case.

“The court charged him on Wednesday [Tuesday] with two cases…and the suspect arrived at the provincial prison at 6:40 p.m.,” Lieutenant Colonel Phorn said.

He added that the victims’ boss—whom police described on Tuesday as the “mastermind” of the illegal fishing operation —remained at large, having fled his house in Stung Hav district.

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