A mother who was arrested along with a suspected accomplice in Phnom Penh on Monday for allegedly attempting to extort $4,000 from her ex-husband in a fake kidnapping plot said that she had only gone through with the plan to see if her ex-husband really loved their son, police said.
Heang Thareth, deputy chief of Chamkarmon district police, said that the two suspects – Vin Savy, 41, a resident of Chamkarmon district; and her friend, Thoeun Pheakdey, 21, a tailor in Meanchey district’s Boeung Tompun commune – are accused of orchestrating the fake abduction of Savy’s seven-year-old son, in which Pheakdey posed as the kidnapper at Savy’s behest in order to extort a ransom from Savy’s ex-husband.
“We are questioning them to prepare documents for the court,” said Thareth.
An unnamed district penal police officer said that the suspects admitted to cooking up the plot almost a week ago, with Savy allegedly giving Pheakdey $5 to buy a new SIM card to mask her phone number.
On Monday, using the new number, Pheakdey called Savy’s ex-husband and claimed to have kidnapped his son, threatening to kill the boy if she did not receive a $4,000 ransom.
Meanwhile, the officer said, Savy picked up her son from Boeung Trabek Primary School, and took him to a house near Prachum Vong pagoda so that the child would not be at home if police searched the house. After Pheakdey called her – from her old number – saying she had carried out her instructions, Savy told her ex-husband to report the incident to police.
Police, for their part, simply investigated the registration documents for the phone numbers and unravelled the case the same day, arresting the two suspects.
To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Sarom at [email protected]