Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Summary execution alleged

Summary execution alleged

Summary execution alleged

AT least two of three men reportedly killed in a shoot-out with police just before

dawn on March 18 were executed at near point-blank range as they lay on the ground,

according to one eyewitness.

"I saw two guys [on the ground] and police held guns to their heads. They went

bang, bang," said the witness who spoke anonymously out of fear for his own

safety.

The police account of the killing claimed that the three men were planning a robbery

when police - tipped off by a fourth man they had detained - began tailing the gang

as they drove a moped down Sihanouk Blvd.

The men reportedly panicked and opened fire on their pursuers, injuring one policeman.

Police said they responded by gunning down two of their assailants - one as he attempted

to climb the fence into the Olympic Stadium - while the third man escaped.

The fourth man, who allegedly led police to the other three - and who claimed the

three men had planned to commit a crime with him - then tried to escape from police

before they gunned him down as well, according to municipal crime police chief Khuon

Sophon.

"These were real robbers," he said.

The bodies of the three 20- to 30-year-old men - two of which had head wounds - were

thrown into a cesspool on the edge of the Olympic Stadium complex just before dawn.

Hours later they were pulled out and taken to Mohamontrei pagoda where they were

laid out for photographers.

Last year, authorities in Phnom Penh killed or wounded about one suspect in every

14 while arresting them, according to municipal statistics - data human rights workers

cite as evidence that authorities, knowing they will never be prosecuted have a blank

slate to act as judge and jury, dishing out the death penalty as they see fit.

The witness to the killing agreed with such sentiments.

"In Cambodia, that is justice.

"Police just kill robbers," he said, adding that police usually take a

bribe to let people free, "except when they get angry."

MOST VIEWED

  • The hairy little heroes saving many lives in rural Cambodia

    IN RURAL Siem Reap province, rats dare to tread where no person will, as these hairy little heroes place their lives on the line each day for the good of the local community. The rodents are the most important members of a special team, leading

  • Hun Sen’s China visit ‘a good opportunity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen’s visit to Beijing on Sunday to discuss economic and trade issues presents a good opportunity for the Kingdom to strengthen Chinese ties and counter punitive measures by the West, an analyst says. The prime minister’s four-day official visit to

  • Former chief bodyguard receives royal pardon

    The former chief bodyguard of late Senate president Chea Sim has received a royal pardon nearly eight years after he was sentenced to 15 years behind bars on several charges, according to a royal decree dated November 12, last year, and obtained by The Post on Wednesday.

  • PM warns EU and opposition on 34th anniversary of his rule

    HUN Sen reached the milestone of 34 years as Cambodian prime minister on Monday and used the groundbreaking ceremony for a new ring road around Phnom Penh to tell the international community that putting sanctions on the Kingdom meant killing the opposition. “Please don’t forget