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Taxi drivers confess to killing sex victim

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea / Khmer Times Share:
Two taxi drivers conspired to rape, rob and murder a passenger. Supplied

Two taxi drivers were charged yesterday with the gang rape and murder of an 18-year-old casino worker, whose body they discarded in a rice canal in Svay Rieng province.

Chheuy Sopheap, 36, and Phleak Mony, 35, were arrested on Tuesday and face life in jail if convicted.

Sok Vuthy, deputy chief of the provincial major crime unit, said Mr Sopheap was arrested in the province. Mr Mony was arrested in Phnom Penh.

Mr Vuthy said the pair had confessed that on Wednesday of last week Sovann Sokmalin, who worked at the Good Luck Casino in Bavet district, was a passenger in Mr Sopheap’s Toyoto Highlander taxi travelling from Phnom Penh to Svay Rieng province.

Mr Mony was following with passengers in his taxi and the pair discussed the victim in phone calls. They plotted to rape her and steal her property.

On arrival in Svay Rieng province and after dropping off the other passengers, Mr Sopheap brought the victim to a quiet place in Bavet commune.  Mr Mony was with them after parking his taxi.

They each raped Ms Sokmalin, strangled her and took her money and jewellery.

“After killing the victim, they tied her to a big rock and threw her body into a rice canal to destroy the evidence,”  Mr Vuthy said.

Children looking after buffaloes found her body on Friday.

Buoy Sovann, the victim’s father, said his daughter was a good girl who was not involved in any argument with anyone in the village or at work.

His daughter had travelled to attend the wedding of a friend in Preah Vihear province but she disappeared and could not be contacted by phone from about 7pm on the night she was killed.

Provincial police chief King Khorn said Mr Sopheap and Mr Mony were still being questioned by the provincial court’s investigative judge.

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