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Arrests made in acid case

The parents of a brother-sister duo accused of a horrific acid attack on a pregnant woman and her 2-year-old daughter have been arrested.

Nhe Deng, 56, and his wife Seng Kim Leng, 55, were detained by police yesterday in Takeo province’s Kiri Vong district.

Their children, Beng Meas, 28, and his sister, Beng Leakhena, 22, have reportedly fled to

Vietnam after allegedly dousing Moung Srey Mom, 31, and her daughter Sok Met Molita, 2, with acid last month.

Takeo provincial deputy prosecutor Tin Sochetra said Deng and Kim Leng were suspected of involvement in the attack, which left Srey Mom with burns to 44 per cent of her body and reportedly caused her to have a miscarriage.

Sochetra also linked the pair to their children’s escape, but said he was yet to lay charges.

“We will continue to question them and investigate whether anyone else is involved in this crime,” he said, adding he was determined to find and punish the perpetrators of the “cruel act”.

Srey Mom has undergone two operations since the attack, which also saw her husband Luy Sovannaroth slightly injured in a scuffle with Meas.

Both the victims and alleged attackers have stores at Tunlob market.

According to police, while Sovannaroth and Meas fought at the victim’s grocery stall, Leakhena doused Srey Mom, who was feeding Met Molita, with acid.

According to Sovannaroth, the attackers were jealous of his store’s success.

Sam Chreb, 48, the victim’s aunt, said she was heartened to know authorities were working hard on the case.

She said Srey Mom at times became angry and felt like dousing her attackers in acid so they would understand her suffering.

“I hope our family will get justice,” she said.

The victim’s family has lodged a court complaint, asking for $500,000 in compensation and demanding that those responsible be punished.

According to the Cambodian Acid Survivors Charity (CASC), there have been five acid attacks this year with six survivors.

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