Police are searching for an unidentified man who fatally shot a South Korean national at a rest stop in Kandal province on Wednesday evening, but are without leads or possible motives.
A South Korean Embassy official, however, said the victim was likely killed over a business dispute.
Witnesses say the suspect and victim arrived at a roadside shelter in Kandal Stung district together shortly before the suspect was seen driving away alone at about 5:30 p.m., district police chief Men Chanrith said on Thursday.
“People said they arrived together in a car. It appeared as if they came to inspect the land,” he said, adding that at least two locals had seen the men together. “The shooting occurred after they got out of the car and went to the community rest stop.”
The South Korean man, the police chief said, was shot three times, including in the left side of his head.
Immediately after the shooting, residents saw the gunman flee the scene in the orange car that the pair had arrived in, which was later found abandoned along National Road 2 in Takeo province to the south, Mr. Chanrith said.
Residents promptly reported the murder to local police, and a team of police and military police showed up, he said.
“All of his pockets were turned out—both in the back and on the sides,” he said of the victim, adding that no form of identification was found on the man, and that it was too soon to speculate on a motive.
Na Hongkyu, a law enforcement liaison at the South Korean Embassy in Phnom Penh, confirmed that the victim was a South Korean national and said the man had been living in Phnom Penh for two years.
Mr. Na identified him only as Cho, a mobile phone importer and distributor whose wife and children live in South Korea, and said he was probably killed “because of business.”
He said the embassy was assisting police in the ongoing investigation and had already notified the victim’s wife about the murder.