Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tiger Head suspects to remain locked up

Tiger Head suspects to remain locked up

Tiger Head suspects to remain locked up

A PHNOM Penh Municipal Court judge has ordered a new investigation into a failed bomb plot, saying there was insufficient evidence to convict five men associated with the so-called Tiger Head Movement.

The surprise move came Wednesday, a date the judge had originally scheduled to announce a verdict in the case, which has stretched on since January.

“There will be another session once an investigation is completed,” said presiding Judge Chhay Kong, who did not say how long a new investigation would take or when the court case might resume.

Chhay Kong also ordered the five defendants, who are accused of planting explosives outside the Defence Ministry and state television station TV3 in January, as well as plotting to blow up the city’s Cambodian-Vietnamese Friendship Monument in 2007, to remain in pre-trial detention.

A lawyer for Som Ek, the alleged mastermind behind the plots, criticised the decision.

“It is a mistake for court officials to expand the case for almost a year, without collecting enough evidence,” said Sam Sokong, a lawyer with the Cambodian Defenders Project.

According to law, he said, his client must be released after 18 months if the court is unable to find enough evidence.

The defendants – Som Ek, Loeuk Bunhean, Phy Savoeung, Pov Vannara and Chea Kimyan – face charges relating to the alleged bomb plots as well as allegedly recruiting and training terrorists for the Khmer National Unity Front, another name for the Tiger Head Movement. If convicted, the men face sentences of 20 to 30 years in prison.


  • Government hits back at threats to pull EBA, suspend UN seat

    The spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) has said the government is in no way concerned after the European Parliament gave it three months to reverse what it called the “systematic repression of the political opposition”. Ignoring the ultimatum could mean facing

  • Chinese influx pushing locals, Westerners out of Preah Sihanouk

    Some within the Kingdom’s tourism industry have speculated that the recent influx of Chinese visitors may hinder domestic tourism as the price of accommodations in the coastal city of Sihanoukville continues to rise. Preah Sihanouk province, which has become a hotbed for Chinese investment

  • Sar Kheng: Sokha requested security

    Interior Minister Sar Kheng on Sunday revealed the story behind the transfer of former opposition party leader Kem Sokha from Trapaing Phlong prison in Tbong Khmum province to his house in the capital. Speaking at the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) headquarters in Prey

  • ‘Dire consequences’ from sanctions, warns AmCham

    American businesspeople in Cambodia have warned that any sanction against the Kingdom would have “dire consequences” that could push Cambodia even further into the arms of China. In a letter to US senators and representatives dated Monday, the American Chamber of Commerce Cambodia (AmCham) said