Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kem Ley’s killer met with gov’t officials, report says

Kem Ley’s killer met with gov’t officials, report says

Oeut Ang at the Phnom Penh Municipal Police headquarters after he was arrested for the murder of political analyst Kem Ley.
Oeut Ang at the Phnom Penh Municipal Police headquarters after he was arrested for the murder of political analyst Kem Ley. Photo supplied

Kem Ley’s killer met with gov’t officials, report says

Oeut Ang, the former soldier and ex-monk charged with gunning down political analyst Kem Ley, met with district and military officials about a week prior to the murder, a report by Al Jazeera has alleged.

In a video report released on Friday, the news outlet says they spoke to multiple sources in Ang’s native Siem Reap province who said the suspect was called to a meeting with “senior district and military officials” about a week before Ley was shot dead in a Phnom Penh gas station on July 10.

“Straight after the meeting [Ang] was put in a car and driven out of the area,” stated the report, which said the sources declined to appear on camera.

Despite a six-month investigation, which closed in December, police have failed to provide any clarity about the circumstances surrounding the slaying, including how Ang travelled from his home in Nokor Pheas commune in Siem Reap’s Angkor Chum district to the capital.

Al Jazeera spoke with a taxi driver, who they said was among the last people to see Ang in Siem Reap.

The man, identified as Deuk Dian, said he dropped the suspect at a taxi stand on the outskirts of Siem Reap town, where he was picked up by a Lexus.

“He was in a hurry, he didn’t even pay my taxi fare,” the driver said.

Ang was caught about 1.5 kilometres from the murder scene. Police quickly released a video confession, in which he claimed to have killed Ley over a $3,000 debt.

That motive, however, is widely doubted, with those close to Ley and the alleged killer saying the pair had never met, while many have noted that Ang had little money. Many believe the critic’s murder was a political assassination.

Reached yesterday, Angkor Chum district police chief Mann Sokhab denied there was any meeting between Ang and military or government officials.

Sokhab said that, as a monk, Ang had previously travelled to Phnom Penh and received money for pagoda renovations, though he said he did not know who supplied the cash.

“We just know that he went to Phnom Penh and became a murderer,” Sokhab said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Hun Sen: Cambodia set to fully reopen

    Prime Minister Hun Sen concludes that the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, during which many people either flocked to their hometowns for family reunion or gathered at tourist attractions across the country, has not caused an outbreak of Covid-19. In a special address to

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Cambodia voted ‘world’s friendliest country’ in Rough Guides reader poll

    Cambodia ranked number one among the “World’s Friendliest Countries”, according to a reader poll conducted by London-based international website “Rough Guides”. Taking submissions through Twitter and Facebook, “Rough Guides”, a well-known travel agency and publisher of guidebooks, said the Kingdom “was by far the

  • S’ville set to turn into ‘second Shenzhen’

    The Ministry of Economy and Finance has awarded a master plan consultancy contract to top Chinese institute for the development and transformation of Preah Sihanouk province into a “Model Multi-Purpose Special Economic Zone”, Southeast Asia’s next logistics and resort hub and innovation centre. The