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Police hunt medic over teen death

Pav Suy / Khmer Times Share:
A file photo shows police inspecting the office of an unlicensed doctor. KT/Ban Sokrith

Police are looking for an unlicensed doctor  in Svay Rieng province whose 19-year-old patient died after he gave her an injection.

Mao Sakhorn, chief of Svay Chrum district serious crime office, said the victim’s family are not cooperating in the investigation and have not filed any complaint against the doctor.

“The physician did not have a licence and already escaped,” he said.

“The girl died at about 4pm, but the victim’s mother only alerted the police at 6pm.

“She had been suffering from a slight fever and headache as a result of a motorbike accident in which she was knocked to the ground a few days earlier,” he said.

A National Police report identified the doctor as Has Bunthoeun, 58, and the victim as a local factory worker.

“The doctor was supposed to cure her, but she died half an hour after receiving the injection.

“We were late to arrest the doctor because the victim’s family informed us late,” Mr Sakhorn said.

“They didn’t want us to take action against the doctor, but we cannot do that because we have to act according to the law. They feel they were responsible for her death for seeking help from the doctor.”

The police chief said people in the village were very loyal to the doctor and did not believe he deserved to be punished.

“Villagers said the doctor should not be punished for his carelessness. They love the doctor so much,” he said.

“The people were really angry with us. When we went to examine the body, they shouted at us and said we were disturbing the dead.

“We are investigating the doctor’s whereabouts through his phone number. We also went to his house and met his wife and children.

“They cooperated with us and were not aware of the death until we informed them.”

Mr Sakhorn added that officers are preparing to send the case to court, regardless of whether the family agrees.

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