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7 suspects grilled over Tuol Kork slayings

SEVEN men arrested on suspicion of being part of a gang that committed an armed robbery could also be responsible for the brutal torture and killing of three children in Tuol Kork last month, officials said Monday.

"Our district police are now interrogating the men to search for more suspects from this group," said Kuoch Chamroeun, governor of Phnom Penh's Meanchey district.

"We also suspect their group might be involved in the savage murder of the president of the Royal Academy for Judicial Professions Tep Darong's [children] last month," he added, but said the men had all denied involvement in the Tuol Kork killings.

The seven suspects were arrested after police received a number of complaints about the group, Mao Saroeun, police chief of Stung Meanchey commune, told the Post.

He added that upon arrest, the group admitted to have conducted armed robberies in the past and showed police five AK-47 rifles they had concealed in a nearby forest in Prey Sor commune.

Possible links

The group denied allegations by police that they had links to a number of other recent armed robberies in Phnom Penh and other provinces.

"The men are now being detained temporarily at Meanchey district police station for interrogation over activities in the past," Kuoch Chamroeun said, adding that he could not elaborate further.

The seven men were arrested in a joint operation between Meanchey district and Stung Meanchey commune police officials.

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