Murder of Cambodian couple: PM demands ‘no intervention’ for titled suspect

Disgraced former Oknha Srey Sina in the custody of police officers following the fatal shooting of a young Phnom Penh couple in their home. - Police

PHNOM PENH: Prime Minister Hun Manet has personally called for the kingdom’s judiciary to ensure that there is no outside intervention in a recent high-profile murder case involving disgraced former Oknha Srey Sina, noting the importance of finding justice for the families of the two deceased victims.

He took to social media on June 25 to share his remarks, amid fears among some members of the public that owing to his former honorific and wealth, the perpetrator may escape serious punishment or be bailed from custody.

“Although the government would never intervene in the work of the judiciary, I would like to call on the judiciary, and prosecutorial institutions in particular, to pay close attention to the strict implementation of the law to find justice for the victims and their families with no form of intervention,” the prime minister said.

He reiterated that his seventh-mandate government has placed a high priority on strengthening the rule of law, especially the strict enforcement of laws which ensure that public security and social order are maintained.

Manet added that this includes ensuring that perpetrators are held accountable for their crimes and face legal consequences, especially those who cause loss of life.

He noted that the law has been strictly enforced – without exception or intervention – against anyone who has caused a fatal accident while driving under the influence of alcohol.

On June 17, Srey Sina is alleged to have gone to the home of victim Long Lysong, 27, to address a dispute between his tenant San Sreypich and the victim. The dispute involved the trimming of a mango tree, some damaged flower pots and a clothesline that extended onto Lysong’s land.

He entered the victim’s home, where a verbal disagreement took place. Sina is alleged to have produced an illegal handgun and shot Lysong dead at the scene. Lysong’s fiancee Khin Kanhchana, 26, was shot three times and died en route to hospital.

Two other men who were working at the house were also wounded as they attempted to hide under a table from a hail of bullets. One was hit in the arm and one in the leg.

The prime minister shared his deepest condolences with the bereaved families and thanked concerned citizens for their sincere debate on the case.

He reminded the public to leave this task to the competent law enforcement institutions, assuring them that the case will be resolved correctly and fairly, in accordance with existing laws.

Manet asked the people to have confidence in the Cambodian justice system.

“On the day of the incident, I issued an order to the relevant authorities and detailed His Excellency Koeut Rith, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Justice, to monitor the implementation of the law in this case and ensure that the law is strictly and fairly enforced to provide justice to the victims and their families,” he added.

The justice ministry has announced that it will hold a press conference tomorrow, June 26, to provide updates on the progress of the case.

On June 22, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court announced that Sina will face two cases.

In the first case, he was charged with two counts of murder and unauthorised use of a weapon under Article 199 of the Penal Code and Article 20 of the Law on the Control of Weapons, Explosives and Ammunition.

In the second case, Sina was charged with two counts of attempted murder and unauthorised use of a firearm under Articles 27 and 199 of the Penal Code and Article 20 weapons control law.

The murder charges carry a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, as do the attempted murders. Illegal use of a weapon carries a maximum of two years.

The justice ministry has asked the judiciary to take “severe” legal action against the former Oknha, requesting that the sentences imposed for both cases be served consecutively. This means Sina is facing a maximum of 30 years in prison. He is currently being held in pre-trial detention. - The Phnom Penh Post/ANN

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Cambodia , suspect , Oknha , murder , couple , Srey Sina


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