Prime Minister Hun Sen has transferred In Raksmey Rithear from his position as deputy head of the General Department of Prisons (GDP) to an advisory role at the Ministry of Interior after he was sued for fraud of more than $70,000.
Raksmey Rithear, who was reassigned in a sub-decree dated February 3 at the request of interior minister Sar Kheng, was sued by seven people last June.
According to a complaint filed by Leang Sieu Kuong, who claims to be one of the seven people who were cheated, Rithear committed fraud totalling $ 71,000 in August 2020. It said Raksmey Rithea had claimed that the ministry needed to recruit more National Police officers.
Sieu Kuong then contacted Raksmey Rithea, saying that he and his brothers and friends – a total of seven people – wanted to join the National Police. The official agreed to the request, saying that Sieu Kuong and the six others needed to pay $10,000 each to process the formalities. He promised that they would be appointed within a few months.
Sieu Kuong then collected enough money and paid it to Raksmey Rithea, who thumb printed a receipt under the name of Sok Vannea.
“I have no doubt at all that I was cheated. Vannea assured me that he held a three-star rank,” he said in the complaint.
He said he had handed $71,000 to Raksmey Rithea, who promised that he would return the full amount if he failed to process the paperwork.
After more than 12 months, the seven had not seen any results, and whenever they contacted Raksmey Rithea he either lied to them or refused to take their calls, Sieu Kuong alleged.
GDP spokesman Nouth Savna told The Post on February 6 that in 2021 the ministry had received the complaint through Sar Kheng’s Facebook page. The GDP has been investigating the case since then.
The plaintiff had also filed a complaint to the criminal police before the prime minister ordered the transfer.
“We attempted to schedule mediation, so that an extrajudicial resolution could be found. But because they have refused to meet with us, we have followed legal procedure and registered the complaint with the police. We have left it to them to solve the case,” he said.
Raksmey Rithea could not be reached for comment on February 6.