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Military Police asks ACU to open probe into ex-officer

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Eng Hy, spokesman for the National Military Police, addresses a press conference on Wednesday. Heng Chivoan

Military Police asks ACU to open probe into ex-officer

National Military Police spokesman Eng Hy said on Wednesday that the Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) should investigate claims by a former deputy military police commander in Kampong Thom’s Baray district, that he received and spent a $300,000 bribe from a marijuana trafficker.

During questioning after his arrest for Facebook posts that were deemed inflammatory by the provincial Military Police, Sorn Samneang claimed that he received about $300,000 after he stopped a car loaded with 172kg of marijuana travelling from Preah Vihear province.

Speaking at a press conference, Hy said in April 2014, Samneang had stopped the marijuana-laden vehicle and allegedly kidnapped the driver, Sorm Vanna.

He demanded money from Chan They, for whom Vanna was allegedly transporting the haul, in exchange for releasing him.

Hy called on the ACU to reopen the case to find out who received the money. He said other military officials may also have been involved.

“Our lawyer who represents the unit will investigate this case and if it involves members of the military police, we will implement the proper procedures. If it involves other people, the ACU can join the investigation,” he said.

Affiliated Network for Social Accountability (ANSA) executive director San Chey said the ACU should look into cases when there are claims of a big drug bust with hints of corruption.

“The ACU should be called to conduct interrogations to find out the mastermind of the corruption scandal if [Samneang’s] claims are true . . . When there is an arrest like this, there are suspicions,” he said.

ACU head Om Yintieng could not be reached for comment.

On Tuesday, Kampong Thom provincial court decided to charge Samneang with public defamation and incitement to commit a crime relating to a series of Facebook posts in which he played the victim after he was discharged from the Military Police last year

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