Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Driver charged, goods investigated

Driver charged, goods investigated

Authorities seize goods yesterday from a bus in Svay Rieng after it was involved in a deadly traffic accident
Authorities seize goods yesterday from a bus in Svay Rieng after it was involved in a deadly traffic accident the previous day. Vireak Mai

Driver charged, goods investigated

The bus driver allegedly at fault in Tuesday’s fatal crash in Svay Rieng province was yesterday charged with death caused by reckless driving, as police opened an investigation into whether tonnes of goods found on the bus were illegally imported.

Le Vang Phing, 43, had been driving the bus from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh when the accident happened, after he attempted to overtake a sedan at high speed and ended up ploughing into an oncoming van loaded with commuting workers.

“He was charged and is now at the provincial prison,” said Svay Rieng provincial traffic officer Tie Hiebsie at the provincial court yesterday.

Hiebsie said Vietnamese national Le had been charged, after initially being placed in detention following his arrest at the scene on Tuesday.

Investigating judge Heng Phally, who presided over Le’s hearing, declined to comment on the case, while provincial deputy prosecutor Orng Ry could not be reached for comment.

At the time of the crash, the minivan had 39 people on board, 18 of whom were killed.

There were only six people aboard the bus, which was loaded up with almost 8 tonnes of goods, including more than 6 tonnes of clothing and various other items, such as shampoo, door locks and books.

Authorities are currently verifying that the goods were legitimately imported.

“We are transporting them to the customs office to check them against their documents,” said Svay Rieng customs officer Nguon Vuth yesterday.

Meanwhile, the bus was dragged away from the crash site on Tuesday and left outside Svay Rieng provincial police station to prevent it being burned by locals outraged by the incident.

“If they had burnt it, the van, the homes of villagers near the road, would be burned too,” a policeman was overheard saying outside Svay Rieng provincial police station.

Le’s charging comes amid a swirl of demands from victims’ friends and family members for him to face justice.

“I want the authorities to put the Vietnamese driver in prison for the rest of his life because he crashed and killed many villagers,” said Hing Bros, 49, yesterday morning at a funeral held for one of the victims at Svay Chrum province’s Svay pagoda.


  • Bareknuckle champion wants Kun Khmer fighter

    Dave Leduc, who is the current openweight Lethwei boxing champion in Myanmar, has announced that he will travel to Cambodia this year to challenge SEA Games gold medallist Prum Samnang any time that is convenient, after their planned match later this month in Slovakia was

  • Five-year-old Hanuman dances his way into hearts of Cambodia

    A young talent from a new-established settlement has emerged, captivating the online world with his mesmerising performances of the traditional Cambodian monkey dance. Roeun Kakada is a five-year-old prodigy who has taken the social media sphere by storm with his exceptional dance skills and dedication

  • Fresh Covid warnings as Thai hospital fills

    A senior health official reminds the public to remain vigilant, as neighbouring countries experience an increase in Covid-19 cases, with the latest surge appearing to be a result of the Omicron XBB.1.5 sub-variant. Or Vandine, secretary of state and spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health,

  • PM declares ASEAN Para Games open

    The 12th ASEAN Para Games officially kicked off on the evening of June 3 at Morodok Techo National Stadium in Phnom Penh, with a spectacular opening ceremony featuring fireworks and performances by some of the Kingdom’s most accomplished talents. Tens of thousands of sports fans

  • Honda shutters Siem Reap football club

    Japanese football legend Keisuke Honda, the owner of Siem Reap football club Soltilo Angkor FC, has been forced to shut the club down, after it failed to attract sponsorship for the upcoming season. Honda, the former manager of the Cambodia men's national football team, said

  • Waterway job still pending for Kampot tourism port’s opening

    The search is still on for a contractor to expand and deepen the Kampot International Tourism Port’s waterway and deliver additional enhancements allowing safe access for larger vessels, nearly a year after the main construction work on the 4.25ha site was completed on June 30, 2022.