Srey Chanthou, the son of 7NG Group managing director Srey Sothea, announced on Saturday morning that he had filed a defamation lawsuit against his company’s client Chhun Navy demanding $7,777,777 in compensation.
At a press conference in Takhmao town, Chanthou said he had filed the complaint because Navy refused to accept a peaceful resolution to the land dispute dating back to 2008 over a 1ha plot in Vihear Sour commune’s Prekchas village in Kandal province’s Khsach Kandal district.
Chanthou said Navy had published a series of defamatory allegations about 7NG on its Facebook page which led many of its clients to falsely believe that the company did not have land to provide to its clients.
He said the land conflict was a civil case, but Navy had filed a lawsuit against him and his father accusing the pair of fraud, a criminal offence, leading a Phnom Penh Municipal Court prosecutor to request a Phnom Penh investigating judge to place them in pre-trial detention.
“We filed a lawsuit to the court against her for defamation and demanded that she pays $ 7,777,777 in compensation.
“Our complaint was handed to a Phnom Penh Municipal Court prosecutor on the afternoon of September 6 [Friday],” Chanthou said.
Navy could not be reached for comment on Sunday.
At least three clients have filed complaints against 7NG to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court asking it to provide justice.
On August 16, Chanthou and his father Sothea were charged with fraud by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court prosecutor Keo Sothea in response to Navy’s complaint about the 1ha plot in Kandal province.
Court documents said the pair allegedly sold the plot to Navy, who discovered while she was attempting to put a fence around it that 7NG did not have the property.
On August 22, Phnom Penh Municipal Court prosecutor Plang Sophal brought an additional charge against them in response to a complaint from another 7NG customer, Sin Sopheak.
Sopheak said in her complaint filed in April last year that she bought seven plots of land totalling 700sqm from the firm on January 29, 2008, on 10-year instalments.
But when she decided to pay the balance on February 23, 2016, she alleged that she discovered the land had never existed, prompting her to file the complaint.
Sopheak claimed she had not been provided with the promised property, despite having paid two years ahead of her monthly instalment payment schedule.
Sopheak demanded Sothea and Chanthou compensate her with $100,000 to make up for the loss of time and money in her case.
Another complaint was sent to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court by Vann San on Thursday, demanding that 7NG pay him $50,000 in compensation.
Doung Loeung, Chanthou’s lawyer told The Post on Sunday that he did not know the exact number of lawsuits from 7NG customers, but believed that his client would take the necessary steps to solve the problems.
“I don’t know the number of lawsuits against my client. I only know that my client has filed a complaint against Chhun Navy and is demanding $7,777,777 in compensation,” Loeung said.