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Military charged over pistol-whipping scavenger

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea / Khmer Times Share:
The man who pistol-whipped a garbage collector. DAP News

Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Saturday charged a military official over the pistol-whipping of a garbage collector with whom the accused had become furious at for looking at him.

Seang Sok, a deputy prosecutor at the court, identified the accused as Brigadier General Pech Tongheng, 41, a military official with the Ministry of National Defence and owner of a condo in Boeung Keng Kang III commune.

Bun Kosal, a Boeung Keng Kang III commune police officer, said that at about 11am on Tuesday, the accused arrived at the condo in his SUV and left it running loudly.

While idling, a man scavenging for garbage nearby on the street looked at the accused, who became furious that the garbage collector was seemingly looking at him over the loud sound of his engine.

“He was angry at the victim for looking at his face. He stepped down from his SUV and took a pistol from his waist and beat the victim’s head,” he said. “After beating the victim, he parked his vehicle within the condo gates and shut the gate.”

Mr Kosal added that the victim was rescued by local police and taken to hospital for treatment, after which he filed a complaint against the accused.

Mr Sok, the deputy prosecutor, said the suspect was arrested by municipal penal police on Friday in accordance with the lawsuit filed by the victim, garbage collector Saing Tola, 21.

Mr Sok added that the accused was charged with intentional violence on Saturday.

“He was charged with intentional acts of violence with aggravating circumstances and faces two to five years in prison if convicted,” he said. “He has now been sent by the judge to PJ Prison pending his trial.”

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