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Casino camera conspiracy

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Khieu Channavy, a former croupier at Nagaworld, exits Phnom Penh Municipal Court following a hearing today.

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court trial of a 22-year-old Cambodian woman and a Malaysian national over breach of trust charges stemming from an incident at Phnom Penh’s NagaWorld Hotel and Casino in August last year ended yesterday.

Khieu Channavy, 22, a former card dealer at NagaWorld, was arrested on August 31 in Phnom Penh, after a complaint was filed by the casino accusing the woman of using a concealed hand-held camera to defraud the casino with the help of an accomplice, according to Presiding Judge Chea Sok Heang.

The judge said Khieu Channavy stood accused of using the camera while dealing cards to help a Malaysian gambler, Lim Kim Hok, who won more than US$1.3 million on August 29.

He added that another Malaysian national, Lim Bun Teng, who was the deputy director of camera surveillance at the casino, was also accused of involvement in the incident.

“Khieu Channavy is a card dealer at the NagaWorld casino, but she hid a camera in her hand for her customer to win the card game in exchange for $2,000 from the player. Her activity has caused the company to lose more than US$1.3 million,” Chea Sok Heang said.

Khieu Channavy pleaded not guilty during yesterday’s hearing and denied all charges against her.

“I had worked as a card dealer for NagaWorld casino for more than two years in Phnom Penh. I am honest and I did not commit this act that I am accused of. I think that this accusation against me is very unjust. Therefore, I would like to ask the court to drop the charges and release me,” she said.

Huy Phary, Lim Bun Teng’s Lawyer, also denied accusations that his client was an accomplice, adding that he had been working at the casino for more than 15 years.  “During the night of the gambling, my client was not on duty because his working hours were finished and he was also not involved with this crime. I hope that the court will find justice for my client and release him,” he said.

Chea Sok Heang said the verdicts against Khieu Channavy and Lim Bun Teng would be announced on March 13.

A spokesman from NagaWorld could not be reached for comment today.

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