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Bodyguard murdered on cusp of starting job

Bodyguard murdered on cusp of starting job

A would-be member of a military bodyguard unit was murdered in a suspected act of revenge and stuffed into the trunk of a car last Wednesday near the G70 military base in the capital’s Choam Chao commune in Por Sen Chey district, police said yesterday.

Por Sen Chey police chief Born Sam Ath told the Post that victim Hang Sopheaktra, 45, was discovered on Friday at Choam Chao commune hall, where police had towed the car in which his body was hidden from where it was parked along National Road 3 – just 500 metres from the military base.

Police were unaware of the body in the trunk until a relative arrived to claim the car and noticed the odour, he added.

“Based on our examination, the body was shot in the leg and back from behind,” said Sam Ath. “It was tied up and put into a package and left in the boot. Thus it is a premeditated murder involving a few murderers.”

According to the victim’s relative, Sopheaktra had called around 2pm to inform his family that he was in Kampong Speu province, and wasn’t seen or heard from until evening, when villagers found the car and informed police.  

“The body was not dumped in Kampong Speu province, but we are investigating into this case,” said Keo Pisey, the provincial police chief of Kampong Speu.

Heang Sopheak, a deputy prosecutor at Phnom Penh Municipal Court who is involved with the investigation, said yesterday details of the crime were still unclear.

However, Choam Chao police chief Loeung Ly said that, according to a relative, Sopheaktra had worked in the bodyguard unit of General Hing Bunheang.

According to Ly, the offic-ials from the unit came to inspect the body, but said that Sopheaktra was waiting on some paperwork before officially becoming a member of the unit.

“According to the information from a relative, the victim is also a land dealer,” he added.

Hing Bunheang could not be reached for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Sarom at [email protected]

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