A Kratie provincial police official said Tuesday that the mysterious death last month of an RCAF Border Battalion 204 soldier is looking more suspicious.
Ny Sok Rorn, 35, died Aug 18 in Snuol district from wounds that appeared to have resulted from torture, according to a human rights official, a provincial court prosecutor and a doctor who examined the body.
But Battalion 204 officials, who previously said the injuries were acquired in a drunken motorbike accident, now maintain that Ny Sok Rorn hurt himself falling drunkenly off a bridge.
Kratie Deputy police Chief Choung Seang Hak said the low height of the bridge in question and the dry ground below rendered the scenario difficult to imagine.
“It is unbelievable. It is a small bridge and not deep,” he said, though he did not specify the height.
Besides, Choung Seang Hak added, the hole the bridge spans was recently filled, and his men could not determine whether it was filled before the reported fall.
He said that, after interviewing soldiers and officers at Battalion 204 and the dead soldier’s family, police will now begin questioning villagers.
“We have more suspicions about his death and the bruises all over his body and head. I suspect it is torture, but we have no witnesses to say,” Choung Seang Hak said.
According to Chan Soveth, an investigator with the rights group Adhoc, a Battalion 204 officer and bodyguards picked up Ny Sok Rorn from his home to take him to the army base on July 28.
On Aug 10, two soldiers returned him, dropping him off beside a rice field about 200 meters from his house.
When neighbors approached Ny Sok Rorn, they found a man scared and traumatized, Chan Soveth said.
Dr Ou Thy Lay, who examined the body, said Tuesday that, aside from bruises and burns on his back and torso, Ny Sok Rorn had severe contusions on one temple and around the back of the skull.