The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Wednesday sentenced the suspected ringleader of a Phnom Penh grenade attack—an alleged attempt to kill her ex-boyfriend in September—to 10 years in prison over a 2015 plot to murder him.
Sok Kimly, 38, was convicted in absentia of instigating attempted murder. She was sick, according to a prison guard.
Police guard the scene of a grenade blast in Phnom Penh on September 2016. (Siv Channa/The Cambodia Daily)Her three accomplices were sentenced to 10 years each for attempted murder, Presiding Judge Y Thavrak said in court. They were identified as Ni Soi Binh, 36, Chang Thi Ve, 46, and Le Dang Dong, 47. A court official earlier said Ms. Kimly was 41.
Suy Sokhon, Ms. Kimly’s attorney, said he was not satisfied with the verdict, describing the murder plot as an empty plan that was not carried out.
“The court cannot charge my client as a perpetrator because the crime did not occur,” Mr. Sokhon said.
He said he would appeal, especially since the complaint from the intended target of the hit, Ms. Kimly’s ex-boyfriend Ea Lyhour, had been withdrawn.
Ms. Kimly was accused of recruiting Mr. Dang Dong to plan the murder. In court, he admitted that she gave him a gun, photographs of the intended victim and his address, and promised him money and a new motorbike if he followed through.
He claimed that he had arranged for Mr. Soi Binh to carry out the shooting.
Mr. Soi Binh told the court that he had been promised $10,000 and received a gun, but claimed he had buried the weapon before visiting Mr. Lyhour and requesting money after producing his photographs.
Ms. Kimly started dating Mr. Lyhour while she was still with her Singaporean husband, but decided to have him killed after he admitted he was only with her for her money, she told prosecutors, according to her testimony previously read in court.
But in court, she denied the admission.
“I did not hire him to kill a person,” Ms. Kimly said. “I did not know Le Dang Dong.”
In September, Ms. Kimly was charged with premeditated murder along with four others for allegedly organizing the grenade attack, which injured at least three people, on Street 163 in Phnom Penh’s Chamkar Mon district.
Police accused the five of trying to kill Mr. Lyhour, who owns a motorbike accessory store just meters from the blast site, but was not injured.
sony@cambodiadaily.com
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