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Four detained in casino torture case

Sun City Casino in Svay Rieng province, the scene of an alleged hostage-taking and beating, is shown in this file photo.

FOUR men were ordered into pretrial detention by Svay Rieng provincial court on Monday on suspicion of holding hostage and torturing two men suspected of cheating a casino, police said Wednesday.

Sing Kim Soeun and Sim Piseth, both 30, were taken hostage and tortured over suspicions they conspired with casino customers to steal money from the venue, police said.

Tanh Kinh Yung, a 34-year-old Malaysian who rented part of the casino from Sun City, and casino staffers Khou Nevan, a 28-year-old Indonesian, Chan Vuthy, 29, and Phan Sambath Romany, 24, have been charged with deliberate battery and illegal human detention.

Major General Chhay Sinarith, director of the Internal Security Department at the Ministry of Interior, said police were tipped off by the casino owner.

“Our police forces stationed in the Svay Rieng province on Sunday operated a crackdown to free the two Cambodian hostages, who had been locked in a secret room and tortured for several days,” the major general said.

The two victims were allegedly stripped naked and placed in a closet at a Sun City hotel room on Friday. They were then subjected to several days of violence by their captors, according to investigating officials.

“They were seriously beaten with belts and walkie-talkies, injuring their heads to force them to confess to the conspiracy with other customers to cheat cash from the casino,” Chhay Sinarith said.

Tanh Kinh Yung and Khou Nevan confessed to beating the two victims in order to force a confession from them, police said. The two Cambodians – Chan Vuthy and Phan Sambath Romany – had no part in the beatings, police said, but simply brought the victims to the room where they were tortured under orders from their employer.

“It is an act of brutality,” Chhay Sinarith said.

“They didn’t follow the law, but violated the law, when they should have sent the two victims to the police over the accusations.”



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