Victims of Cobra Throwing Summoned to Court

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court has summoned to court four people involved in a land dispute with a private company in Phnom Penh’s Boeng Kak I commune, including two victims of a snake-throwing incident in October, over alleged violence and theft.

On October 30, a bag containing three poisonous cobras was thrown into the home of Ly Sreang Kheng, 58, and his son, Ly Bun Heang, 16, in what the pair said was part of an ongoing campaign of intimidation by the Khun Sea Import Export Company to force them off their land.

The court summons, dated November 27 and signed by investigating Judge Chaing Sinath, calls Mr. Sreang Kheng, Mr. Bun Heang, and Hing Chan and Sok Huch, two other people involved in the dispute, for questioning for aggravated theft and the use of violence.

The summons does not specify what the accusations of theft and violence pertain to, and contacted Wednesday, Judge Sinath declined to provide any information about the charges.

The four are slated to appear before court on Monday.

“In the case that they do not appear, we will issue an arrest warrant,” the summons says.

In a statement Wednesday, Mr. Sreang Kheng and Mr. Huch said they did not know what the summons referred to, but said it was an “injustice.”

“Khun Sea’s staff have used violence on us, such as bashing us unconscious, destroying our property, and most recently throwing cobras into our houses, but authorities never investigated or arrested those perpetrators,” it says.

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