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Victim’s brother-in-law held in Battambang rape-cum-murder case

Victim’s brother-in-law held in Battambang rape-cum-murder case

A Battambang provincial police officer told The Post on Thursday that the suspect in a rape-cum-murder involving a 37-year-old woman was arrested on Wednesday. He was the victim’s brother-in-law.

Battambang provincial deputy police chief Chet Vanny, who is in charge of the serious crimes office, said several villagers found the nude body of the victim, identified as Hang Horn, at a rice field in Battambang town’s Chamkar Samrong II village, in Chamkar Samrong commune.

Suspecting the case to be one of murder, provincial police specialists immediately opened an investigation to identify the assailant.

Vanny said that a joint team of police officials from Battambang district, specialists from Sangke district police department, and legal assistance from the Battambang provincial court prosecutor on Tuesday identified the 33-year-old as the suspect.

He lives in Sangke district’s Roka village, in Roka commune, Battambang province.

“The suspect is the victim’s brother-in-law. He confessed that before the incident, the two of them [suspect and victim] were in a secret love relationship.

“Fearing his wife would learn about the illicit affair and demand the victim’s property as compensation, and to avoid the subsequent scandal, he decided that it would be easier to just kill her,” Vanny said.

He said the suspect admitted that on the day of the incident [Sunday], the suspect lured the victim to Phou Puy Market on the pretext of buying some dessert.

“But upon reaching the market, the suspect continued riding his motorcycle to a rice field behind it. He started kissing and molesting the victim, culminating in her rape. Then, the suspect killed the woman by strangling her with a hammock string,” he said.

Vanny said the suspect’s confession was consistent with the forensic investigation of the victim’s body, including exhibits that police specialists examined and recovered from the scene on Monday.

They included light green underwear, a pair of high-heeled shoes and the hammock string. The evidence indicated that the victim was physically assaulted prior to the rape-cum-murder.

Vanny said that based on the suspect’s confession, police have embarked on legal procedures to charge him with premeditated murder. He was sent to the Battambang Provincial Court on Thursday to be formally charged.

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