Two Arrested in Murder of Military Police Officer

Police in Kompong Speu pro­vince on Sunday arrested two of seven men suspected of hacking a military police officer to death with axes and seriously injuring two other officers in Kandal province, said Khem Samon, police chief for Kompong Speu’s Odong district.

Sok Vanna, 28, a taxi driver, and Ith Vantha, 29, a primary school teacher, were arrested Sunday for allegedly killing Yim Sokha, 27, and injuring Khum Samit, 32, and Meas Sokkheng, 27, said Mr Samon, adding that police are searching for the five other men involved in the attack.

The two suspects and an unidentified man were riding a motorcycle involved in a minor collision Friday evening with the motorcycle carrying the three victims in Kandal province’s Ponhea Leu district, Mr Samon said by telephone. No serious damage was done to either vehicle so the two groups parted ways, but later the suspects and their unidentified passenger, along with the four other men, allegedly returned and savagely attacked the victims, who were hanging out near the scene of accident.

“I don’t understand why the suspects returned to kill the victims,” Mr Samon said.

Mr Vantha was arrested at Vaing Chas commune’s police headquarters in Odong district when he came in voluntarily to deny the allegations against him, Mr Samon said, adding however, that Mr Vantha later confessed to the crime. Mr Vanna was arrested at a taxi stand in Odong district, Mr Samon said.

Ponhea Leu district police chief Tim Savuth said Sunday that the arrested men and their five accomplices allegedly attacked the victims with axes. The two suspects are in police custody in Ponhea Leu district police headquarters and will be sent to Kandal Provincial Court today, he added.

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