Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - US politician with ties to Cambodia kills self



US politician with ties to Cambodia kills self

New York state assemblyman Bill Nojay walks along the street during a Republican event earlier this year in America. Facebook
New York state assemblyman Bill Nojay walks along the street during a Republican event earlier this year in America. Facebook

US politician with ties to Cambodia kills self

New York state assemblyman Bill Nojay, who had maintained a colourful connection to Cambodia over the past three decades, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in New York on Friday, according to the Associated Press.

Nojay most recently made headlines in Cambodia in 2014, when he was named along with three others in a fraud case. He was treasurer of Akra Agricultural Partners Inc, which billed itself as designed to rejuvenate Cambodian rice farming by serving as an umbrella brand for cooperative farmers.

Phnom Penh dentist Eng Lykuong invested $1 million in the company in 2012, only for the board of directors to spend the next year avoiding her calls, she said yesterday. The case saw three of the board tried in absentia and the fourth, San Richer, found guilty in late 2014.

Among the board members was Nojay’s old classmate from Columbia University, Sichan Siv, known for being the United States’ ambassador to the UN from 2001 to 2006.

Siv was also responsible for bringing about Nojay’s first visit to Cambodia in the 1980s, according to a 1996 interview with the assemblyman in the Rochester Business Journal.

By the mid-1980s, Siv was the Khmer People’s National Liberation Front’s (KPNLF) ambassador to the UN. The KPNLF was a guerrilla force operating along the Thai border and Siv invited his old classmate to join the cause as its US counsel.

An archived version of Nojay’s biography on his official website said that he crossed the border “without the benefit of a visa but with courtesy of Task Force 80”, referencing an elite border patrol unit of the Thai army.

MOST VIEWED

  • Tourists urged not to skip trip

    The Ministry of Tourism has called on international tourists not to cancel trips to Cambodia, but urged them to adhere to several dos and don’ts when arriving in the Kingdom during the Covid-19 pandemic. The ministry released an eight-point instruction manual on Wednesday published

  • The taxman cometh – Cambodia’s capital gains tax casts the net on individual taxpayers

    In a country where only limited personal income tax existed, the new taxation law beginning January 1, 2021, will make taxpayers out of Cambodians, whether they are ready for it or not About two years ago, a little known amendment was made to Article 7 of the Law

  • Cambodian-American gets Star Trek treatment

    Kevin Ung, a Cambodian-American whose family escaped genocide during the Khmer Rouge’s reign of terror, was recently selected from thousands of applicants to participate in the Television Academy Foundation’s inaugural 2020 Star Trek Command Training Programme, a course intended to give hands-on filmmaking experience

  • Cambodia seeks to be transport hub

    Cambodia is working on several fronts to modernise its transport infrastructure and services, concentrating on opening new international gates to relieve and balance traffic congestion at its borders, Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol said on Thursday. This is part of the Kingdom’

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • Deminers unearth ancient lion statue

    Cambodia Mine Action Centre (CMAC) director-general Heng Ratana told The Post on Tuesday that a statue of a lion was found by mine clearance experts while they were digging for a development project. It was sent to the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts last