Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday convicted an ex-police officer of intentional acts of violence and sentenced him to two years behind bars, but suspended one year and with time served, the ex-officer will be out of prison in four months.
Judge Leang Samnath identified the former officer as Song Pisal, 25, who was a second lieutenant with the Penal Department at the Ministry of Interior.
Judge Samnath said the violence occurred at about 9pm on May 24, 2018, in Chamkar Mon district’s Boeng Keng Kang II commune, where Mr Pisal beat a young man after accusing him of stealing his friend’s motorbike.
Judge Samnath identified the victim as Im Panha, 24, a university student living in Sen Sok district’s Kork Khleng commune.
“The court has decided to convict the accused and sentence him to two years, but the term of his sentence shall be reduced to only a year,” the judge said. “The rest of his punishment shall be suspended.”
“The court also orders him to pay 40 million riels [about $ 10,000] in compensation to the victim, who was the plaintiff in this case,” he added.
Mr Pisal was arrested on May 25 after he beat the victim, the judge noted.
Deputy prosecutor Sin Vireak said that on the day of the attack at about 9pm, Mr Pisal, who was then a penal police officer, was joined by three of his friends.
The group then caught the victim as he walked alone on a street, he noted.
Mr Vireak said that the group accused the victim of stealing their friend’s motorbike and selling it at a pawn shop.
Mr Pisal then beat the victim and tried to force a confession and tell him where he pawned the motorbike, but the victim denied the allegations and did not confess.
“The accused was angry at the victim for allegedly stealing his friend’s motorbike and pawning it,” Mr Vireak said. “He became enraged when the victim would not tell him where he sold the bike.”
“He then cuffed both hands of the victim and beat him to get information,” he added. “He caused serious injuries on the victim’s face, mouth and head.”
After beating the victim, Mr Pisal ordered his friends to carry the victim with his hands cuffed by motorbike to the Ministry of Interior at about 10pm before fleeing.
The victim was later rescued by police at about 11pm. After rescuing him, police sent him by car to a private clinic for treatment.
Mr Pisal was later arrested at about 5.30pm on May 25 at his house in accordance with the victim’s complaint.
Mr Pisal said outside the court room yesterday that he would not appeal his because he would be released in the next four months.
“I think that the sentence and payment are heavy for me but I will not appeal because I will be free from prison in the next four months,” he said.