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Military official admits to murder

Military official admits to murder

A suspect in the poisoning and bludgeoning to death of his female business partner confessed his guilt in a hearing at Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday.

Military official An Sophoeun, 35, said he killed the woman in March with his accomplice, Meng Ly, 27, who had previously confessed his guilt at a hearing in late November.

“I called the victim to meet at a local restaurant at about 6 pm on March 14 at Preak Leap commune in the suburb of the city to talk about our wood business, and I poisoned her by putting 10 sleeping pills in her ABC stout glass,” said An Sophoeun.

An Sophoeun said he and his accomplice then drove to Preah Vihear province, using to victim’s Lexus to transport her to an isolated forest. The victim was still alive when they arrived, so An Sophoeun told Meng Ly to kill her with a tyre lever.

“I decided to do this because I was angry with the victim for not repaying US$10,000 she borrowed from me for our wood business,” said An Sophoeun.

He said he had known the victim for about five months.

The victim’s car was sold for US$5,000 to a 53-year-old Vietnamese national, Din Yong Dave, who has been arrested and charged with receiving stolen goods. He was absent for yesterday’s hearing.

A note from the victim’s mother was read by a court clerk and requested the accused pay her US$100,000, in addition to the Lexus and US$2,000 she claimed was in her daughter’s possession at the time of the crime.

Defence lawyer Bun Kong requested the court slash the verdict to a minimum sentence, given the admission of guilt from the accused.

Presiding Judge Kor Vandy said a verdict would be announced on December 30.

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