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Cop in shooting trial

A penal police officer and his wife were tried yesterday by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court for shooting and injuring a moto taxi driver in a dispute over a traffic accident in Phnom Penh’s Chamkarmon district last year.

According to presiding judge Sous Sam Ath, victim Ham Chantrea, 40, crashed into Eng Liheang, 31, from behind while both were driving motorbikes. The pair started arguing and Liheang called her police officer husband Luy Vuthy, 35, to the scene. Vuthy allegedly fired three bullets on his wife’s request, meant not to hurt Chantrea but to threaten him. The first two bullets were aimed in the air but the last – directed at the ground – hit the victim’s right foot, causing serious injury.

Vuthy was also charged with illegal weapon use, and his wife was charged as an accomplice in causing the injuries.

Both denied the accusations during the hearing yesterday.

“I merely … pointed at the victim. I did not fire it. But my gun fired, and I did not know that it hit and injured him,” Vuthy stated.

The couple’s verdicts are due in March.

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