Banteay Meanchey provincial court sentenced a former RCAF Division 12 captain to 29 years in prison in absentia Wednesday for killing three men and raping three young girls, a court official said Friday.
Mann Peou, 41, failed to attend his trial as he escaped from custody in April 2001, while traveling to hospital on a motorcycle, Chet Khemara, a deputy prosecutor at the court said.
Mann Peou was found guilty of raping two 13-year-old girls and attempting to rape a 10-year-old in 1999, and of raping a 16-year-old girl in 1998, Chet Khemara said.
All the assaults took place inside the girls’ homes in O’Chrou district’s Seila Khmer village, while their parents were farming, he said
Mann Peou was also found guilty Wednesday of shooting three men dead in 1999 in the same village, and of robbing a woman of her motorbike in 2000.
Neither Mann Peou’s victims nor their families were at the hearing, Chet Khemara said
Banteay Meanchey military police Commander Rath Sreang said on Friday that Mann Peou was arrested in 2000, but escaped.
Mann Peou “told the prison officials he was sick and needed to go to hospital. A prison guard drove him to the hospital on a motorbike and they both ran away,” Rath Sreang said. “If I know where he is I will go and arrest him, regardless of how far it is,” he added.
Chhoeung Sokhom, Banteay Meanchey judicial police chief, said the sentence was inadequate.
“He is a brutal man,” Chhoeung Sokhom said. “Only 29 years is not enough.”
“Now he is at large,” he added. “I worry he will commit the same crime again.”