Pailin Provincial Court yesterday charged a man for allegedly stealing paddy rice from a farmer’s fields in Sala Krao district.
Colonel Ry Kara, district police chief, identified the accused as Hong Vanny, 34, a rice buyer living in Pailin province’s Pailin city.
The victim was identified as Roeung Roeun, a 47-year-old farmer living in Suon Ampov Lech village in Pailin city’s Pailin commune.
Col Kara said Mr Vanny was charged with theft and faces between six months to three years in jail if convicted. The accused is currently in pre-trial detention, he added.
Col Kara noted Mr Vanny was arrested on Thursday after he had stolen two hectares worth of paddy harvested from Mr Roeun’s farm in Phnom Kuy village in Sala Krao commune.
Second Lieutenant Keo Seng, a penal police officer working with Sala Krao commune police, yesterday said Mr Vanny was a rice businessman living in Pailin province.
Sec Lt Seng said that at about 7.30pm on Thursday, when Mr Roeun was away from his fields, Mr Vanny drove his own harvester to harvest more than two hectares of the victim’s rice fields.
Sec Lt Seng added that at about 8pm, Mr Vanny was still driving his harvester when Mr Roeun returned to his fields. Upon seeing Mr Vanny stealing his paddy, Mr Roeun filed a complaint to commune police.
Sec Lt Seng added that five police officers proceeded to inspect the farm and arrested Mr Vanny on the spot.
“He was arrested red-handed while he was driving his harvester and harvesting the victim’s paddy,” he said. “When we arrived at the victim’s farm, we saw that [Mr Vanny] had already harvested more than two hectares of the victim’s rice fields.”
Sec Lt Seng noted that after the arrest, police seized a harvester and other related materials from Mr Vanny. Police officers also returned the stolen paddy to Mr Roeun.