A couple in Kampong Chhnang province are accusing a provincial deputy police chief and two police officers of corruption and demanding bribes – and have produced a video of one of the officers accepting a wad of cash in his office to back their account.
Choun Thheab, 54, the owner of a pig farm in Rolea Ba’ier district, said that his son surreptitiously took the video after the two of them were arrested in April for what police said was drug paraphernalia found in one of their employees’ motorcycles.
According to Thheab, police demanded $3,000 to release them.
“My wife tried to negotiate to lower the price,” Thheab said. “[Police officer] Pov Siphan told us to give it to him, otherwise they will not release us.”
The short video taken by Thheab’s son appears to show them talking to Siphan in his office before handing over a wad of cash, which Siphan accepts.
Thheab and his wife filed complaints with the Anti-Corruption Unit and the provincial court against Deputy Police Chief Chun Tharith and police officers Kim Sareth and Pov Siphan. They were summonsed for questioning by the court on Tuesday.
Siphan could not be reached yesterday, but Tharith denied he had demanded bribes and said the husband and son were arrested for distracting police officers during a drug raid.
“I gave the case to another officer to do it,” Tharith said. “I don’t know if they received money because I already gave this case to them.”
Kampong Chhnang Deputy Prosecutor Long Sitha said that the three accused will likely be summonsed next month after Thheab finishes submitting evidence.