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Senator continues to chase one-time execs

Senator continues to chase one-time execs

Senator Kok An has filed another criminal complaint against the jailed former treasurer of one of his companies, and the executive’s wife, over an advertisement they placed in Khmer-language newspapers on December 21, according to a copy of the complaint obtained by the Post yesterday.

It accuses former Anco Brothers executive Heng Chheang and his wife, Tep Kolap, former rector of Phnom Penh International University, of defaming the senator by claiming he used trickery to have them jailed.

The complaint also accuses them of using derogatory language against him.  

“The activities [of the couple] are unpardonable. If I do not sue them in court to find the truth … they must then really think that their lying and cheating are right, because no on dares to punish them,” the complaint reads.

The complaint follows their December 7 conviction on breach of trust charges for embezzling tens of millions of dollars from Anco, which is owned by the senator’s wife, Sok Im. Both were sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison, following two controversial audits.

An internal audit found they had siphoned US$34 million from Anco. That auditor, Trak Sophat, faces criminal charges for alleged forgery over his audit. 

A court-appointed auditor found that since 2001, about $58 million had been transferred from the account Anco used to a second account registered under Heng Chheang and Tep Kolap’s names.

That auditor, Kak Key, only traced transactions going from the first account to the second, and did not trace those going back, he told the Post. Defence lawyers failed to cooperate, leaving him unable to conduct a complete audit, he said.

“I went to the pagoda many times to have a monk throw water on me for this unfortunate case,” the chairman of Morison Kak & Associates said.

“Now my nightmare is finished, and please do not revive this in my memory.”

Anco Brothers – which distributes Budweiser beer, Evian water and British American tobacco products in Cambodia – did not have a corporate bank account. It relied on a joint account registered under the names of Sok Im and Heng Chheang, her cousin.

Kok An’s latest criminal complaint calls for them to repay US$2.68 million in loans from Sok Im, and pay $100,000 in reputational damage.

Heng Chheang and Tep Kolap have appealed their convictions, insisting that more money flowed from their account to the one used by Anco.