A member of the Royal Cambodian Navy standing trial at the military court yesterday in Phnom Penh was found guilty of aiding and abetting the theft of rifles used in a string of robberies and sentenced to two years in prison.
Vang Lay, 24, a former sailor stationed in military unit 8 in Preah Sihanouk province, was arrested in August last year after helping five of his friends steal three AK-47s.
The rifles were then used in a string of 15 robberies that took place in Kampot province, resulting in the deaths of several villagers.
Vaing Lay was also ordered by presiding judge of the military court Nu Samiday to pay a fine of US$500.
The defendant claimed during trial last week that he was threatened by military police and forced to confess to the crime, even though he was innocent.
Defence attorney Keo Chamrern said after the trial that he was not satisfied with the verdict.
“The sentence seems to be unjust for my client, who has done nothing,” Keo Chamrern said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Phak Seangly at [email protected]