Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Three men are arrested for stealing artefacts

Three men are arrested for stealing artefacts

Three men are arrested for stealing artefacts

Police from the Ratanakkiri provincial crime unit and those from Banlung and Veun Sei districts have detained three suspects for their alleged involvement in stealing holy statues and other ancient artefacts from a pagoda.

Ratanakkiri deputy provincial police chief Phen Dina told The Post that about three weeks ago, a collection of holy statues and copper artefacts were stolen from the Hat Pak pagoda, in Veun Sei’s Hat Pak commune.

Included in the list of stolen items were three copper Buddha statues, six copper gongs, a copper buffalo statue, three copper chicken statues, and other similar items as well as a motorbike.

Dina said his team identified a suspect on Tuesday, and along with Ban Lung city police officers arrested Lay Syvantha, 33, who lives in La Banseak commune in Banlung city. A raid of his house turned up all the missing relics.

“Upon questioning, Syvanthat claimed he bought the artefacts from two men who live in his village,” Dina said, adding that he offered $20,000 for the haul but ended up giving them only $2,000.

On Wednesday, Dina ordered Veun Sei police to pick up the other two suspects – Morn Chantha and Khoun Ka, both 18, for questioning.

“During the interrogation, the two confessed that they stole the artefacts after Syvantha promised $20,000. However, he gave them only $2,000 after discovering the items were made of copper,” Dina said.

He said police will send all three suspects to Ratanakkiri provincial court on Thursday morning for further legal action.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom lacks up to 400MW in available electricity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has called on the general public, hoteliers and businesspeople with generators to use them as back-up as the Electricity Authority of Cambodia cannot generate enough electricity to meet needs due to low water levels in power station reservoirs. On Saturday evening

  • Sor Chandeth defends his criticism of Hun Sen

    Former senator Sor Chandeth has defended his choice of words when criticising Hun Sen, saying he was merely speaking metaphorically to attack the Prime Minister’s political life, not his actual person, as the latter seeks damages. [img] Chandeth spoke to The Post on Thursday,

  • South Korea’s Moon arrives in Kingdom for state visit

    South Korean president Moon Jae-in and his wife arrived in Phnom Penh on Thursday at the start of a three-day state visit to Cambodia to strengthen ties and further the friendship between the two countries. After arriving at the Phnom Penh International Airport in the

  • Youths band together to clean ‘filthy’ Boeung Trabek canal

    Inspired by their affection for the environment, a desire to have a clean and beautiful city, and wanting to send a message to people to stop littering, a group of some two dozen volunteer youths have taken to picking up trash day and night from