Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - CNRP seeks probe into arrest

CNRP seeks probe into arrest

An immigration police official at the scene of an alleged fake accident in Banteay Meanchey province’s Poipet town on Thursday. Cambodian National Rescue Party official Mang Puthy was charged with intentional violence after the incident. Photo supplied
An immigration police official at the scene of an alleged fake accident in Banteay Meanchey province’s Poipet town on Thursday. Cambodian National Rescue Party official Mang Puthy was charged with intentional violence after the incident. Photo supplied

CNRP seeks probe into arrest

Opposition lawmaker Eng Chhay Eang yesterday asked Interior Minister Sar Kheng to launch an investigation into the jailing of a Cambodia National Rescue Party official in Poipet charged with intentional violence with aggravating circumstances after allegedly hitting an immigration official with his car.

CNRP deputy provincial chief Mang Puthy was sent to pre-trial detention on Saturday despite the existence of a widely circulated video in which immigration official Chhean Pisith can be seen collapsing to the ground, seemingly without ever being touched by the vehicle.

Pisith was subsequently taken to a local clinic, then transferred to a Thai hospital. Puthy, meanwhile, was sent to provincial prison under Article 218 of the Criminal Code. Information disseminated by rights group Adhoc on Sunday had initially identified the charge against Puthy, who also fronts the local union Cambodia Informal Economy Reinforced Association, as attempted murder.

In calling for the probe during a debate on the Traffic Law in the National Assembly yesterday, Chhay Eang suggested it was possible Pisith suffered from some other illness that caused him to collapse.

“I can analyse that if there is no collision with the car but he still got injured, maybe it was because of some other disease,” Chhay Eang said yesterday.

He added that errant drivers normally had a tendency to flee the scene but that Puthy did not and questioned Pisith’s continued grasp on his walkie-talkie and keys, which he claims should have fallen from his hand if he had actually been struck.

Speaking to the assembly later, Prime Minister Hun Sen took Chhay Eang to task for his analysis, sarcastically commending him on his “medical examination” of the case.

“If his Excellency [Chhay Eang] goes to work as medical examiner, he will be better at it than his work as a lawmaker,” Hun Sen said.

Chhay Eang did, in fact, study health sciences in the 1980s.

Talking to reporters after the parliamentary session, Sar Kheng said he was unaware of the details of the case but had directed relevant officials to start an investigation.

“This problem is new, so we cannot make any conclusions immediately. I have ordered immigration police and local authorities in Banteay Meanchey to examine this case,” he said.

But Jim Leang, a lawyer with the Cambodian Labour Confederation, said he will represent Puthy and, based on the video evidence, hoped the court would free his client.

Since footage of the incident was released on social media it has gone viral among a largely disbelieving public, with numerous memes placing pictures of a prone Pisith in comical situations.

MOST VIEWED

  • Two luxury hotels latest quarantine options for inbound travellers

    The Inter-Ministerial Committee to Combat Covid-19 has designated two luxury hotels as alternative quarantine options for travellers who wish to enter Cambodia through Phnom Penh International Airport – Sokha Phnom Penh Hotel & Residence and the Courtyard by Marriott Phnom Penh. In a notice detailing guidelines issued

  • Visa A holders get to quarantine at Himawari Hotel

    The Ministry of Health has permitted foreign diplomats, UN and International NGO officials to undergo quarantine at Himawari Hotel in the capital in case they do not have a separate place suitable for this purpose, but the government would not be responsible for the expenses.

  • Baby saved as mother is lost to Covid

    Newborn baby Neth David has had a rough start in the world. His mother, Vong Daneth, was seven months pregnant when she contracted a severe case of Covid-19. When it became clear to her doctors that she would not survive, they performed a cesarean section

  • Jabs for kids bring hope for school reopenings

    Cambodia is tentatively planning to reopen schools – at least at the secondary level – when the vaccination of children aged 12-17 is completed, even though daily transmissions and deaths in other age groups remain high. Schools across the country have been suspended since March 20, one month

  • Governor: Covid subsides in capital

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng said the Covid-19 situation in the capital’s 14 districts has eased, with only two districts still recording a high number of infections. “Transmission cases in all districts are dropping, though they are relatively higher Meanchey and Por Sen Chey.

  • Hun Sen: Get 12-17 age group ready for Covid jabs

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has told parents of children aged 12-17 in Phnom Penh and the provinces of Kandal and Preah Sihanouk to get them ready for vaccinations soon. “There is a need to vaccinate children and youths aged 12 to 17. According to the statistics provided