Monday, January 12, 2009

Four Cambodian men charged in failed bomb plots

Monday, January 12, 2009

Mon, 12 Jan 2009

Phnom Penh-Cambodian police charged four men with attempted murder and terrorism Monday in failed bomb plots against the Ministry of Defence and state-owned television in the capital early this month. The four men were arrested last week for allegedly planning the foiled January 2 attack, in which two small TNT bombs were laid outside the ministry and the TV3 headquarters in central Phnom Penh.

All four men appeared in court and were also charged with crimes relating to the illegal recruitment of armed people.

Prosecutors argued the men were members of small rebel group, which they said had links to other militant organizations and planned the attacks to destabilize the government and attract international attention.

Police said last week that the apparent leader of the group, Som Ek, had also confessed to ordering a thwarted bomb attempt at the Cambodian-Vietnamese friendship monument on one of Phnom Penh's main boulevards in July 2007.

Police also alleged Som Ek, also known as Ti To, had told them his group received funding from international supporters.

Som Ek is a dual Thai-Cambodian citizen and was a military policeman during the early 1990s, police said.


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