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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Siem Reap cops allege high-level corruption

Siem Reap cops allege high-level corruption

The Anti-Corruption Unit yesterday released a February 18 complaint from Siem Reap police officers accusing the unit of not acting on a previous complaint they made about alleged corruption sanctioned at the highest levels of the provincial police force.

The unit, however, did not say it would investigate, and instead cited a warning letter it had sent after the initial complaint as apparent proof it had taken action.

According to the complaint posted yesterday on the ACU’s website, a group of unidentified police officers alleged that the Siem Reap police personnel chief Sun Chamnan had been allowed to get away with serious malfeasance because he was close to police chief Soath Nady.

The alleged misconduct includes ghost worker positions, promotions being given to his relatives, accepting large bribes in exchange for doling out jobs, and promoting officers without consulting with their unit chiefs.

“We Siem Reap provincial police officers are upset with Soath Nady for allowing Sun Chamnan to do anything arbitrarily, [likely] causing the CPP to lose votes dramatically in the future in the province because the shortage of justice [we provide],” the complaint says.

It then lambasts the ACU for failing to take action on ghost officers or the prior complaint, the date for which is not provided.

“Why doesn’t [the ACU] believe the report of our officers who have encountered injustice? Why doesn’t the ACU see these acts of Sun Chamnan? Or does he use money to silence the ACU?”

Nady, the provincial police chief, said yesterday that the accusations were false and that any promotions made by Samnan had gone through unit chiefs.

“He is in charge of the personnel unit, so he is always [a target] for criticism. Those who are promoted are over the moon and those who are not hit the roof,” he said.

Chamnan could not be reached.

ACU officials could not be reached for comment, but a letter posted by the unit cited a warning letter it had previously sent to a deputy fire brigade chief at the provincial police station in connection with the case.

“The ACU would like to post the whole complaint and the attacks [on it] for the public,” it said.

Am Sam Ath, a senior investigator with rights group Licadho, said the ACU should be investigating the complaint instead of “ignoring” the aggrieved police officers.

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