Military Police Chief Pays Ransom for Daughter

The 16-year-old daughter of the military police commander in Siem Reap town was returned home safely Saturday night after being kidnapped and held for ransom for more than 24 hours, police officials said.

Two men dressed in police uniforms abducted Morm Sreiya, the daughter of police general Morm Samon, as she was driving home from school Friday afternoon, said Prak Chanthoeun, deputy military police commander for Siem Reap. One of the men grabbed the girl and gagged her while the other took the wheel of her Camry and drove away with Morm Sreiya and his accomplice.

She was released, reportedly un-harmed, about 7 pm Saturday after family members paid an undisclosed ransom.

Her kidnappers, about whom little was made public, remained at large.

“Our military police are working hard to seek out the kidnappers. Until now, our investigation is on-going and we cannot reveal it to the press,” Prak Chanthoeun said.

When reached for comment Sunday, Morm Samon said his family was happy his daughter was out of harm’s way but declined to say more about the situation.

“If you got some news from someone, please print it,” he said. “My daughter is safe and now our family is grieving the ransom.”

Ou Em, penal police chief for Siem Reap town, would not comment on how much the kidnappers were paid but said they initially called and demanded $150,000 from the family, who were able to negotiate a lower payoff.

According to a close aide of the victim’s family, who asked not to be named, the family paid at least $100,000 for their eldest daughter’s release.

Ou Em said a joint task force of military and national police hunted for Morm Sreiya’s abductors to no avail.

Officials said the crime was un-usual given its targeting of a prominent law enforcement official.

“It is a first for Siem Reap city that kidnappers have taken hos-tage the daughter of a high ranking official for money,” municipal police chief Sort Nady said Sunday.

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