Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ‘Death threat’ against PM sees charges filed



‘Death threat’ against PM sees charges filed

Sam Pheap was arrested on Thursday over an alleged death threat against Hun Sen that he posted on social media. Photo supplied
Sam Pheap was arrested on Thursday over an alleged death threat against Hun Sen that he posted on social media. Photo supplied

‘Death threat’ against PM sees charges filed

A Cambodian migrant worker faces up to five years in prison after being charged over the weekend with crimes stemming from an alleged death threat made against Prime Minister Hun Sen in a Facebook video.

Phnom Penh Municipal Court investigating judge Kor Vandy charged Sam Pheap, also known as Ven Sopheap, 27, with making a death threat, incitement and incitement to discrimination, court spokesperson Ly Sophanna said yesterday.

A warrant for his arrest was issued on October 18 for allegedly “insulting” and “looking down on the life” of the prime minister.

Prior to his arrest on Thursday, Pheap had allegedly posted a video on a Facebook page under the name “Sopheap Konkhmer” announcing he would travel from his workplace in Thailand to register to vote in his home province of Prey Veng.

Both police and court officials yesterday remained tight-lipped on the exact nature of the alleged threat, but in a video posted on another Facebook Page, also using the Sopheap Konkhmer moniker and featuring a photo of the accused, an unseen voice refers to a plastic baby doll as “Hun Sen”.

The toy, wrapped in white cloth, stands next to a clump of incense sticks, which the voice in the video threatens to set alight.

“Hun Sen, this is the last moment of your life. The body of Hun Sen will melt like this,” the voice says. “If you do good things, you receive good. But if you do wrong, you will receive bad things. This is your last life and you should walk away from being prime minister.”

The creator of the video, uploaded on July 16, remains unknown. In posts on Pheap’s personal Facebook page, he has repeatedly criticised the government for allegedly ceding land to Vietnam and called the premier “shameless” for taking out millions in loans from China.

The incitement to discrimination charge, which hinges on the accused being malicious or violent against a person based on their ethnicity, race or religion, carries a maximum sentence of three years, while the death threat could see Pheap imprisoned for a further two years.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom's Covid cluster cases jump to 194

    The Ministry of Health on February 25 confirmed 65 new cases of Covid-19, with 58 linked to the February 20 community transmission. The latest cluster cases include nine Vietnamese nationals, five Cambodians, one each from Korea, Singapore and Japan, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total number

  • Locations shut, dozens more Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health has closed 23 locations in connection with the February 20 community transmission of Covid-19 and summoned for testing anyone who had direct contact with affected people and places. The number of discovered related infections has risen to 76, including 39 women. In a press release,

  • Cambodia's Covid cluster cases rise to 137

    The Ministry of Health on February 24 recorded 40 more cases of Covid-19, with 38 linked to the February 20 community transmission. Of the 40, two are imported cases involving Chinese passengers. The 38 include two Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total cases

  • Covid cluster raises alarm, health bodies urge vigilance

    The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia have expressed great concern over the February 20 cluster transmission of Covid-19 in the community. Both entities appealed for vigilance and cooperation in curbing further spread of the virus. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said

  • PM confirms third Covid-19 community transmission

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on February 20 announced the Kingdom's third outbreak of Covid-19 community transmission after 32 people tested positive in just over 10 hours. Addressing the public from his residence after an emergency meeting, Hun Sen said: "I dub it February 20 Community Event, in which 32 cases

  • Cambodia's cluster cases jump to 259

    The Ministry of Health on February 27 recorded 26 more cases of Covid-19 linked to the February 20 community transmission, bringing the total to 259 in one week. The 26 include three Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. The ministry noted that five of the Chinese