Siem Reap provincial police yesterday arrested a man who allegedly defamed them in a Facebook post.
Major Keo Sarin, an officer with the provincial general crimes investigation department, identified the suspect as Pheath Pichsamnith, 22, who is jobless and lives in Siem Reap city.
He noted that a Facebook account using the name Chhuong Pheath Pichsamnith on Sunday posted that “Siem Reap provincial police caught and detained me and took money from my parents as a bribe to release me. It now time for you to pay for your sins.”
Maj Sarin said police traced the post to Mr Pichsamnith, noting that what he wrote was not true because he had never been arrested before.
He added that the post was liked by many Facebook users who posted negative comments which tarnished the honour and reputation of provincial police officers.
“What he wrote and posted on Facebook was not true,” Maj Sarin noted. “The post caused the public to mistrust our provincial police.”
“It seriously affected the reputation and honour of the provincial police chief and other senior officers,” he added.
Maj Sarin said that following the post, police started an investigation to trace the owner of the Facebook account.
He noted that based on the contact address and Facebook profile photos, police identified the suspect and arrested him at his house in the district’s Kork Chak commune.
Maj Sarin said that during his interrogation, Mr Pichsamnith admitted posting the message, saying that he did so because he suffers from mental health issues due to drug abuse and was drunk when he wrote the post.
He noted that after his arrest, the suspect tested positive for drugs.
Brigadier General Phoeung Chendareth, provincial deputy police chief, yesterday said that Mr Pichsamnith is accused by police of public defamation through social media and also drug use.
He noted that the suspect is still detained at provincial police headquarters for more questioning and will be sent to provincial court today.