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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Svay Sitha's acid-throwing wife at home

Svay Sitha's acid-throwing wife at home

KHOURN Sophal, who is wanted by police for the acid attack on her husband's teen

lover, Tat Samarina, on December 5, 1999 is at the family home in Toul Kork and no

attempt has been made to arrest her.

Sophal is the wife of Svay Sitha, the Undersecretary of State at the Council of Ministers.

Sitha was also a former advisor to the Minister of the Council of Ministers, Sok

An.

According to witnesses, last year Sophal and two bodyguards attacked Marina at a

food market near Olympic stadium. They held the 16-year-old down and poured a five-liter

container of nitric acid over her head and body, causing grievous burns to her face,

scalp and torso.

In late December authorities investigated, and a warrant was issued for Sophal's

arrest. The warrant has never been executed.

It was claimed at the time that she had fled the country.

Now sources close to the investigation say that Sophal is known to be living at the

family home and recently made a trip overseas for leisure.

Police have admitted that they have never questioned Sitha about his wife's whereabouts.

Phnom Penh Municipal Court officials said they were unaware of the reports that Sophal

was currently living in the family home.

They said enforcement of the warrant was up to the investigating judge, Mong Mony

Charya. He was unavailable for comment.

Meanwhile Marina has been undergoing medical treatment at the Shriners Burn Unit

in Massachusetts, where her brother Tat Sequindo is a medical student.

The outstanding warrant is not the only legal action pending over the attack.

The Cambodian Embassy in Washington has confirmed that it received a copy of a civil

suit filed in the United States in which Marina is claiming damages from the Cambodian

Government.

They were unable to provide details of the suit, saying they had merely received

it, acknowledged the receipt and forwarded it to Phnom Penh.

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