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Chea Mony asks to meet disgraced top cop in prison

Chea Mony asks to meet disgraced top cop in prison

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090227_05.jpg

Union president has requested permission to visit Heng Pov, who oversaw the investigation of his brother's slaying.

Photo by:
HENG CHIVOAN

Former Phnom Penh police Chief Heng Pov shown here in a file photo.  

CHEA MONY, president of the Free Trade Union (FTU), has requested permission to visit the former Phnom Penh police chief, Heng Pov, in Prey Sar prison.

Chea Mony said he intends to visit the former police commissioner primarily to inquire about the 2004 killing of his brother, former FTU leader Chea Vichea, who was gunned down at a Phnom Penh newsstand. He told the Post Thursday that he would not force the ex-top cop to talk about his brother's slaying, but hoped they would be able to discuss it.

Heng Pov is currently serving a 58-year sentence on a range of charges including kidnapping, murder and extortion. He attempted to flee the country and was granted political asylum in Sweden before being deported from Malaysia back to Cambodia.

Heng Pov was in charge of the investigation into Chea Vichea's death and has hinted subsequently that he knows about an alleged coverup.

The two men convicted for the killing - Born Samnang and Sok Sam Oeun - were released by the Supreme Court in December, pending further investigation.

Heng Pov's lawyer, Koa Sopha, told the Post Thursday the visit could be in both of their interests - hinting that Heng Pov could potentially shed new light on Chea Vichea's murder. He added that the UN and other NGOs should visit Heng Pov in prison, saying that "while he is accused of nine crimes, he is also human".

Thun Saray, president of the rights group Adhoc, told the Post Thursday it would likely be difficult to gain access to this high-profile prisoner.

Mong Kim Heng, Prey Sar prison director, said he had not yet received Chea Mony's letter of request and declined further comment. 

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