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Bodyguard who shot American surrenders

The bodyguard of a high-ranking military official was sent to Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday after he allegedly shot an American man on Saturday while escorting his superior.

Capital police chief Chuon Narin identified the bodyguard as 30-year-old Kheng Sarath, who surrendered himself to authorities on Saturday. However, the name of the high-ranking military official, who works at the Ministry of National Defence, remains unknown.

“Kheng Sarath turned himself in to the police after he shot a foreigner,” the police chief said.

He said the suspect was with his superior, driving down Norodom Boulevard at about 1:30am on Saturday morning, when the 24-year-old victim was crossing the street. The victim, who the police chief claimed was drunk, allegedly struck their vehicle with a stick.

He added that Kheng Sarath then exited the vehicle and fired his gun at the ground with the intention of frightening the victim, but the bullet ricocheted and struck the young man in the buttocks.

Sean MacIntosh, spokesman for the US embassy in Phnom Penh, said yesterday that consular officials are investigating the case.

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