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Swift action called for in killing spree

Swift action called for in killing spree

A MAN whose wife and three children suffered serious gunshot wounds during a shooting spree in Kampong Cham province has called for the suspect to be swiftly detained and prosecuted, though the soldier remained on the run yesterday.

Last Thursday, 50-year-old Sles Yeb, a soldier with Royal Cambodian Armed Forces Battalion 203, allegedly opened fire on residents of Kroch Chhmar district after an argument with his wife and son.

Three people were killed in the rampage.

In addition, the wife and children of Nhor Vann Trey, 32, were hit by bullets fired from an AK-47 assault rifle and remain hospitalised in serious condition.

Nhor Vann Trey said by phone yesterday that he was shocked at the apparently random act of violence.

“I do not know why he shot at my family. I have no dispute with him,” Nhor Vann Trey said.

He added that he had submitted a request for the rights group Adhoc to intervene and pressure authorities to arrest Sles Yeb as soon as possible.
“We want him arrested and punished. If he is at large and free, villagers are living in fear,” he said.

“He is a soldier, and soldiers are always supported by their military commanders. With this support from the military commander, it is difficult for the authorities to arrest and punish him.”

But Sim Uy, the district military commander, said he had no intention of aiding Sles Yeb.

“No one will dare to intervene in this case. We have tried very hard to find him and put him in jail to stop the killing in the future,” he said.

Kroch Chhmar district police chief Lay Nguon said yesterday that police believed Sles Yeb was being aided by “colleagues”, but that there was no concrete evidence of this.

He added that a raid of a guesthouse in Kampong Cham town had been fruitless, and speculated that the suspect could very well have fled elsewhere after carrying out the attack.

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