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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Woman injured in acid attack, spouse arrested

Woman injured in acid attack, spouse arrested

Police officials in Kompong Cham’s Koh Sotin arrested a man yesterday who, in what police called a fit of jealousy, doused his wife with acid as she went to take a bath.

Following police questioning, Seng Bunath, 42, allegedly confessed to splashing acid on his wife, Ngonn Sokleng, 35, early that morning because she had supposedly been in contact with other men, said Koh Sotin’s district police chief Breng Him.

After throwing acid on his wife, the suspect drove her to the hospital. “She sustained minor injuries on her back, left hand and on her right wrist and leg,” Him said. “It was just battery acid and wasn’t very strong, so she can walk normally.”

Acid attacks have been a constant problem in the Kingdom despite a strict 2012 law on the use of acid. The Post reported six acid attacks in 2015.

Police said Bunath had purchased the acid during a trip to Ratanakkiri province several days ago. Commune police chief Kong Sruo noted that the couple had often engaged in heated arguments, but that the husband was not suspected of domestic violence.

“They were officially separated but he continued to visit her in their home,” Sruo said. The families of the suspect and the victim subsequently visited the authorities to have the complaint against the suspect dropped, but
authorities said it was impossible since he had already been arrested.

“We already sent him to the district police headquarters, therefore we have no right to do anything,” Sruo said.

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