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Man ‘wasn’t beaten’, Bodyguard Unit says

Police detain a man in central Phnom Penh after members of the Bodyguard Unit suspected him of carrying a weapon. Photo supplied
Police detain a man in central Phnom Penh after members of the Bodyguard Unit suspected him of carrying a weapon. Photo supplied

Man ‘wasn’t beaten’, Bodyguard Unit says

Police yesterday denied reports that members of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s personal bodyguard unit had beat a man for carrying a weapon near the premier’s home in the early hours of the morning, saying he was instead the victim of a drunk-driving accident.

Local media outlet Koh Santepheap Daily reported that Chea Sok, 38, was assaulted by members of the elite unit at about 1am after he tried to take sanctuary inside the compound near the Independence Monument, saying he needed to escape pursuers.

Yet Chaktomuk commune police chief Chob Sokun said the report was false and that the man had in fact fallen off his motorbike while trying to escape the bodyguards, who had approached him wrongly suspecting that he had a weapon in his shirt pocket.

“Last night, a mentally-ill and drunk man on a motorbike was driving his bike alone with a plastic light bulb inside his T-shirt pocket, and the bodyguard unit... were suspicious and called out to him,” Sokun said.

“He was scared and frightened, and he tried to drive away but he crashed about 20 or 30 metres from where we had asked him to stop,” he added. “The blood [on his shirt] was caused by the crash, not a beating.”

Bodyguard Unit commander Hing Bun Heang could not be reached for comment.

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