Prey Veng Provincial Court on Saturday charged two men for impersonating monks and stealing a motorbike from a 68-year-old moto-taxi driver.
Major Oung Bunheng, deputy chief of Kampong Trabek district police, identified the accused as Sim Visal, 22, and Pol Panha, 20, both from Prey Veng province’s Kampong Trabek district.
Maj Bunheng said the court charged them on Saturday with unauthorised wearing of Buddhist robes and theft with aggravating circumstances.
He added that they each face five to seven years in prison if convicted, noting that they have been jailed pending their trial.
Maj Bunheng said that on Thursday morning at about 9am, the two accused disguised themselves as monks and collected alms from villagers in Prey Poun commune.
After collecting money from villagers, the two men hired moto-taxi driver Chhim Khoeun, 68, to transport them to a pagoda in Thkov commune, about 10 kilometres from the place where they raised money from villagers.
“But when the moto taxi arrived at a quiet place near a rice field, they tied his hands and legs. They beat him and threatened to kill him if he shouted for help,” Maj Bunheng said. “They then took off their robes and one of the two men drove the motorbike and they fled.”
He said after they fled, the victim shouted for help and was rescued by villagers. He later filed a lawsuit against the suspects in Prey Poun commune.
The two suspects were later arrested Thursday evening in Kraing Svay commune. After the arrests, police seized the stolen motorbike and the funds raised.