KANDAL provincial police said yesterday that they did not expect to immediately arrest the perpetrators of a triple murder that took place in Takhmao town over the weekend. The killings brought to four the total number of multiple homicides in as many months, but only one of those cases has resulted in an arrest.
Provincial police described the murder of three women, who were found shot dead on Saturday morning, as a “priority” case, but declined to provide details of ongoing investigations.
Iv Chamroeun, provincial police chief, said police were “burning our hands and legs ... in order to apprehend the murderers”, but were not expecting the case to be solved soon.
“We cannot say when they will be arrested, as it is a murder crime that could possibly take a long time [to investigate],” he said.
Investigations of three other multiple murder cases in recent months have achieved mixed results.
No arrests were made after a 50-year-old Royal Cambodian Armed Forces soldier allegedly opened fire on residents of Kroch Chhmar district in Kampong Cham province, killing four in July, an official said yesterday.
Lay Nguon, district police chief, said that investigations were “ongoing to apprehend the perpetrator, Sles Yeb, who has remained at large”.
Meanwhile, Am Sam Ath, a technical supervisor for rights group Licadho, said a police officer accused of killing two people and injuring three with an AK-47 in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district in July had been arrested and charged with premediated murder.
He said Vong Saneath was being held in pretrial detention, and that a trial date had not been set.
“Normally it would take at least 18 months to investigate a felony, and the trial date is set after the completion of the investigation,” he said.
In August, a 35-year-old man who allegedly murdered five family members and injured three others in Svay Rieng province also took his own life.
Khieu Sopheak, spokesman for the Ministry of Interior, said multiple-murder cases were not necessarily harder to solve than single-murder cases. “It depends on the tracks left behind by the perpetrator,” he said. “When they kill, if they leave a track, it is very easy for us.”
He said that police were investigating Saturday’s triple-murder, but that the case was proving difficult because the killers had not left many clues.
“So far we don’t have any tracks,” he said.
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY BROOKE LEWIS