Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Heist foiled when toy gun breaks

Heist foiled when toy gun breaks

Heist foiled when toy gun breaks

A young money exchange clerk embarrassed a would-be robber who threatened her with what turned out to be a shoddily made toy gun in Phnom Penh’s Chamkarmon district yesterday, said police.

Tuol Svay Prey I commune police chief Pov Pidor said that the Cambodian-American suspect, Choam Chao commune resident Khem Ra, 41, was in the midst of robbing the currency exchange and money transfer business of law student Lao Lichheng, 23, when the plastic gun he was using – much like his plans for the heist – crumbled to pieces in his hand.

According to Pidor, the suspect confessed to brandishing the toy pistol at the shop owner and demanding the money.

However, Pidor continued, when Ra took the threat a step further and pistol-whipped the victim, the plastic toy broke in his hand, prompting Licheng to rush out of the house and call for help.

The suspect then fled across the street into another house and demanded the owner keep quiet, he added.

“The suspect caused no injury to the [currency exchange store] owner, but ordered me not to charge him [in exchange for coming out of the house],” said Pidor, who pretended to agree to the suspect’s terms.

“Then, I followed him and made the arrest,” he said, adding that Ra had decided to rob the money transfer store – of which he was a repeat customer – after losing his money gambling.

Pidor said that Ra had been deported from the US three months ago for multiple run-ins with the authorities.  

The suspect is due to be sent to court today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Sarom at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • The hairy little heroes saving many lives in rural Cambodia

    IN RURAL Siem Reap province, rats dare to tread where no person will, as these hairy little heroes place their lives on the line each day for the good of the local community. The rodents are the most important members of a special team, leading

  • Hun Sen’s China visit ‘a good opportunity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen’s visit to Beijing on Sunday to discuss economic and trade issues presents a good opportunity for the Kingdom to strengthen Chinese ties and counter punitive measures by the West, an analyst says. The prime minister’s four-day official visit to

  • Former chief bodyguard receives royal pardon

    The former chief bodyguard of late Senate president Chea Sim has received a royal pardon nearly eight years after he was sentenced to 15 years behind bars on several charges, according to a royal decree dated November 12, last year, and obtained by The Post on Wednesday.

  • PM warns EU and opposition on 34th anniversary of his rule

    HUN Sen reached the milestone of 34 years as Cambodian prime minister on Monday and used the groundbreaking ceremony for a new ring road around Phnom Penh to tell the international community that putting sanctions on the Kingdom meant killing the opposition. “Please don’t forget