Three suspects were arrested in Praek Leap commune of the capital’s Chroy Changvar district on February 22 after a man was killed in a neighbourhood dispute the previous day.
District Military Police acting commander Hang Narith told The Post that the three were among six suspects who allegedly used knives and swords to attack three others, killing the man and seriously injured his two companions.
“They were arrested at the construction site of a Borey [gated residential community] located near the crime. Our forces are still searching for three more suspects,” he said,
Narith declined to identify the trio who have been arrested, saying they were sent to Phnom Penh municipal Military Police for questioning and that their identities would be made public once they were ready to charge them.
Lim Chanratana, deputy Praek Leap commune police chief, identified the murder victim as Khem Tola, a 20-year-old construction worker from Prey Veng province.
Tola and his two friends were reportedly drinking in front of a relative’s home when the group of six suspects savagely attacked them, killing Tola at the scene.
The two injured men are Sem Heng, 23, and Chet Chandin, 25, who were from the same village as Tola.
Chanratana said Tola was stabbed in the chest and also suffered a deep wound in his right thigh.
One of the survivors, Heng, has injuries to his costal cartilage – located on the thorax around the rib cage – as well as a deep cut on his left hand. The other surivivor, Chandin, lost three fingers in the attack. Both are currently in the emergency unit at Calmette Hospital.
Chanratana said the motive for the attack was not immediately clear. But citing local residents, he said that before the incident, the victims were drinking with their relatives and singing karaoke in front of the house of Tola’s brother-in-law.
At 10pm, the six suspects arrived on two motorbikes and stopped near the house. They revved their engines loudly and the victims responded by cursing at them and telling the suspects to go away.
The suspects then left, but returned a short while later armed with knives and swords. They rushed at the three victims and assaulted them with the bladed weapons before fleeing the scene.
The Chroy Changvar Military Police later arrested three of them and seized two motorbikes, two swords and two knives.
National Military Police spokesman Eng Hy declined to comment, citing an ongoing investigation.