Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday tried four men over a violent brawl sparked by a dog bite in Por Senchey district last year.
The violence took place at about 8 pm on May 19, last year in Chom Chao commune.
Judge Heng Kessaror identified the accused as Seng Kath, 30, Kim Yi, 22, Im Chanthan, 48, and his son Im Phaneth, 22.
He said that all four were charged with acts of intentional violence with aggravating circumstances and face up to five years in jail if convicted. They were arrested in Chumpou Voan 2 commune on May 21.
Judge Kessaror said that at about 7.30 pm on May 19, an 18-year-old relative of Mr Kath and Mr Yi walked by Mr Chanthan’s house in the commune.
He said that while he was walking on the road, Mr Chanthan’s dog bit him, injuring his foot.
Judge Kessaror said the victim went back to his house in the commune and informed his relatives, including Mr Kath and Mr Yi.
He said Mr Kath, Mr Yi, the victim and some friends travelled in a tuk-tuk and on motorbikes to Mr Chanthan’s house to seek compensation from him.
Judge Kessaror said Mr Chanthan, however, denied that he owned the dog, sparking an argument.
He said that the four accused then started fighting in front of the house, using samurai swords and steel rods.
Judge Kessaror noted that local police intervened and stopped the fight before sending all four men, who suffered injuries, to a private hospital for treatment.
He added that the four were arrested on May 21 after they were discharged from hospital.
During yesterday’s trial all four accused requested the court to drop the charges and release them from prison.
Mr Kath told the court that Mr Chanthan and his son started the fight.
“On that night, my group only went to Mr Chanthan’s house to inform him that his dog had bitten and injured my relative,” he said. “But Mr Chanthan and Mr Phaneth started slashing us with samurai swords during an argument.”
“To defend ourselves, my relative and I took steel rods from my tuk-tuk and fought back,” he added.
But Mr Chanthan told the court that it was Mr Kath and Mr Yi who used samurai swords to attack him and his son first.
He said that Mr Kath’s group entered his house while he, his son and his wife were inside.
“His group was cruel. They entered to beat me inside my house and when my son intervened they slashed him,” Mr Chanthan told the court. “To defend ourselves we fought back using steel rods and pieces of wood.”
He claimed that on the day of violence, he and his son did not have any samurai swords.
Mr Chanthan requested the judge to drop the charges against him and Mr Phaneth.
Chuon Tech, Mr Kath’s and Mr Yi’s lawyer, claimed that his clients were the victims and that they were defending themselves after being attacked.
He requested the judge to drop the charges against his clients and release them from prison.
Mr Tech also demanded $50,000 in compensation from Mr Chanthan and his son.
Mom Channy, Mr Chanthan’s and Mr Phaneth’s lawyer, claimed that his clients were the victims and that they were slashed by Mr Kath and Mr Yi.
“My clients were the real victims and I request the judge to drop their charges,” Mr Channy told the court. “My clients are also demanding $50,000 in compensation and want the judge to punish Mr Kath and Mr Yi in accordance with the law.”
A verdict is due March 13.