A motorist who killed three people in Phnom Penh last week while attempting to escape a hit-and-run was charged on Saturday as he recovered in a hospital from serious injuries sustained when a mob beat him in retribution.
Meas Sok Heng last Monday sent motorbikes and bodies flying across Monivong Boulevard, killing three and injuring about 10 others in a wave of carnage.
Tin Vansy, chief of the municipal traffic accident inspection unit, said on Monday that Mr. Sok Heng had been charged for two crimes: driving without care and attention resulting in injury to numerous people, and death to numerous people.
The charges carry respective sentences of one to three years’ in prison and fines of up to 15 million riel, or about $3,750, and two to five years and a fine of up to 25 million riel, or about $6,250, said Y Rin, spokesman for the Phnom Penh Municipal Court.
Contrary to media reports that Mr. Sok Heng had been transferred to Prey Sar prison, Mr. Vansy said: “Investigating Judge Y Thavrak issued an order to put him in provisional detention at Prey Sar, but he still needs emergency care at the [Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital].”
The telephone seller, 30, from Meanchey district was sent to the hospital after receiving an extended beating from onlookers at the scene.
Investigations into the beating would only happen if a complaint is filed by Mr. Sok Heng or his family, Mr. Vansy added.
Chhoeung Yav Yen, the hospital’s deputy director, said Mr. Sok Heng’s condition had begun to improve.
“He’s awake now…he got better…and can breathe by himself,” Mr. Yav Yen said.
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