Police Arrest Four in Abduction-for-Ransom Case

Police have arrested four young men in connection with the abduction Friday of a teenage daughter of the military police commander of Siem Reap town but said that

the group’s ringleader remained at large Monday night.

Two of the alleged kidnappers, Chak Channoeun, 25, and his 15-year-old younger brother, were arrested Monday in Siem Reap town, said Brigadier General Chea Sambath, information director for the national military police. Their older brother and alleged ringleader of the operation, 26-year-old Chak Channy, remained on the run Monday night and reportedly in possession of the $80,000 ransom paid by the victim’s family.

Chea Sambath said police arrested the two remaining suspects, Phan Kim An, 26, and Loeut So-kanharith, 23, the same day in Battambang province.

“The ringleader is still at large, and now our national military pol-ice are hunting him, because all of the $80,000 is being held by Chak Channy,” Chea Sambath said, add-ing that all four were being held by military police in Siem Reap town.

Morm Sreiya, the victim and daughter of military police commander Morm Samon, was re-turned home safely Saturday after more than 24 hours of captivity.

Two men dressed as traffic pol-ice officers abducted the 16-year-old while she was driving home from school Friday afternoon. One grabbed and gagged her while the other took the wheel of her Camry and drove off with the pair inside. Police did not identify which two suspects took part in the abduction.

On Monday, the victim’s father, Siem Reap town military police commander Morm Samon, said he was aware of the arrests but declined to comment further.

Chea Sambath said authorities have recovered the uniforms used in the abduction as well as three plastic toy handguns and one air gun at the home of Phan Kim An in Battambang province.

In a Saturday article, Khmer-language newspaper Rasmei Kampu-chea said an individual known as “Ramony” was also being sought by police. According to the article, this suspect was the younger brother of imprisoned former Phnom Penh deputy minor crime police chief Ly Rasy, a claim denied by the man’s mother.

Chea Kim Houy, 60, said her son, Ly Rasy, accused of aiding and abetting former Phnom Penh police chief Heng Pov in a series of crimes, has no such brother. Her only other son is a repairman living in the capital, she added.

“At first, I didn’t believe it when my relative told me, but I saw it [in the newspaper],” she said Monday from her Phnom Penh home. “I think [the paper] wants to defame my family.”

Rasmei Kampuchea Editor-in-Chief Pen Samithy said he had not received any complaints from Ly Rasy’s family and claimed military police provided the information. “I will not make a correction unless I receive a complaint,” he said.

Chea Sambath said there was no link between Ly Rasy and the kidnapping of Morm Sreiya.


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