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Gang related: 3 suspects in shootout questioned

Three alleged members of an armed gang – whose purported leader, Kheng Piseth, was killed in a shootout on Friday – were sent to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court for questioning yesterday.

Colonel Eng Sorphea, chief of the Serious Penal Police Unit in Phnom Penh, said that suspects Ky Thoeun, 36; Soth Ya, 34; and Lor Vuth, 35, were arrested on Friday after stealing a luxury motorbike from a man in the capital’s Stung Meanchey commune. Police seized three pistols from the men during the arrests.

“They were active armed robbers who had experience in theft, and who also have robbed and shot many people who were injured or died in Phnom Penh as well as other provinces,” Sorphea told reporters yesterday.

“Another suspect who was the group’s leader was shot dead by police in a rice field as he attacked our police after the robbery and was trying to escape arrest by the police.”

Police have preliminarily charged the men with aggravated theft and illegal use of a weapon, according to Sorphea. Under the Penal Code, if found guilty, the men could face at least seven years in prison.

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