The trial of four men accused of a grenade attack in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district last October, an alleged attempted political assassination which wounded five and killed an 11-year-old, began yesterday at Phnom Penh Municipal Court.
The suspects were questioned for an hour on their background before the trial was adjourned for 10 days.
The court heard former chief of Kokroka Commune Phy Nop, 46, also known as Phy Leap, is charged with initiating the hit against rival Sorn Sin, 56, who was eating dinner outside his house at the time of the attack.
Pov Bunthoeun, 34, the president of the local council, the Andoung 6 Association, has been charged as an accomplice along with Nuon Samrith, 28, also known as Mab, and Eng Dalin, also 28.
According to Colonel Mak Hong, chief of Sen Sok District Police, speaking after the hearing, the hit was allegedly “masterminded” by Nop who, together with Bunthoeun, had clashed with the victim over roles in the commune and land disputes.
Hong claimed Bunthoeun hired triggermen Samrith and Dalin. The former is accused of throwing the grenade while the latter of driving the motorbike used in the crime.
Hong said the alleged killers were originally promised $10,000 in payment but received only $5,000 because the hit failed.
An ensuing argument about the money was reported to military police, who arrested three of the suspects in December and Dalin in April.
If found guilty, the group face between 15 years and life in prison.