Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Fundraiser a phony, prosecutor tells court

Fundraiser a phony, prosecutor tells court

Fundraiser a phony, prosecutor tells court

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court heard the case of a 33-year-old motortaxi driver yesterday who was charged with fraud after being accused of inflating his credentials and associating himself with an initiative of the Prime Minister Hun Sen’s, to raise funds from an unsuspecting donor.

Chheng Sopha was arrested on November 5 following a complaint from Korng Tola, director of a Korean-language school in Chom Chao commune in Phnom Penh’s Por Sen Chey district.

Sopha allegedly presented himself as head of fundraising for the general director of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Vocational Training’s administration and finance department.

In that guise, he told Tola that he needed $100 to bring in funds for Prime Minister Hun Sen’s volunteer student initiative, according to Judge Keo Mony.

“He was a motodop. But he pretended to be a personal assistant to [the general director] in charge of raising money on behalf of his boss,” Mony said.

He was arrested while waiting to pick up the money, he added.

Sopha denied the accusation during his trial.

He said a man named Ouch Puthy, who was a passenger on his motorbike, asked him to deliver the letter containing the bogus titles.

When he showed up at the school, the police swarmed in on him.

Sopha added that Puthy, who can’t be found, said he would pay him $10 to deliver the letter on his behalf.

“I was only the victim who was cheated by Ouch Puthy,” he said. “I am an innocent person. I would like to ask the court to drop the charges and release me.”

Court vice prosecutor Ek Chheng Huoth, asked that Sopha be “strongly punished”.

The verdict will be handed down on June 13.

MOST VIEWED

  • EU officials: Ending EBA an 18-month procedure

    EU officials have confirmed that it will take a total of 18 months to complete the procedure if Cambodia’s preferential Everything But Arms (EBA) trade agreement is to be withdrawn. According to EU Agriculture and Rural Development spokesman Daniel Rosario, the formal process has not

  • IPU slams government claim

    The president of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Gabriela Cuevas Barron, has refuted a claim by the National Assembly that she “highly appreciated the achievements of Cambodia” in its July national elections with a tweet saying “Of course not!” before adding “No congratulations”. A delegation from

  • Conflict lingers on Paris Accords

    As the Kingdom prepares to commemorate on October 23 the 27th anniversary of the signing of the 1991 Paris Peace Accords, which ushered in an end to nearly two decades of civil war, there is political conflict on whether the tenets of the agreement are still being

  • EU agrees VN trade deal despite rights concerns

    The EU on Wednesday agreed to a free-trade agreement (FTA) with Vietnam, a country described as having a “major rights-abusing government”. This comes amid the 28-nation bloc preparing the procedure for a possible withdrawal of Cambodia’s Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential trade agreement on