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Ex-officer charged with defaming police

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
Military police arrest the accused earlier this week. CEN

Kampong Thom Provincial Court yesterday charged former military police officer Sorn Samneang with public defamation and incitement before placing him in pretrial detention.

Deputy prosecutor and court spokesman Say Nora said that after going through the evidence and questioning Mr Samneang, he decided to charge him.

“I charged him and the investigating judge ordered him to be placed in pretrial detention,” he said.

Provincial police arrested Mr Samneang on Sunday for repeatedly posting allegations about the police on his Facebook page despite being warned to stop doing so.

Mr Samneang had gone live on Facebook claiming that he was unjustly dismissed from service after he cracked a case involving more than 170 kilos of drugs in 2013, which he claimed belonged to a powerful individual.

The National Military Police said Mr Samneang had broadcast “fake news” which affected the honour of the military police in Baray district where he had been based until his service was terminated in 2017.

Provincial military police deputy commander Chheang Sokhom said yesterday that after questioning Mr Samneang, they took him to court and accused him of defaming the force and inciting the public to support him through his live Facebook feed.

“It is an issue concerning an individual, but he used Facebook to attack our military police,” he said. “This has affected the honour of our 10,000-strong force.”

Military police spokesman Brigadier General Eng Hy said a press conference will soon be held to provide details on Mr Samneang’s arrest and his posting of fake news on social media.

Provincial military police commander Hang Thol on Monday rejected the accusation of unjust dismissal hurled by the dismissed officer.

“In fact, at that time, he seized more than 100 kilograms of marijuana,” he said. “After seizing it, he hid the marijuana and did not report the matter hoping to extort money from the traffickers.”

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