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Three Suspects Detained for Murder of Journalist

  • Heng Reaksmey
  • VOA Khmer

Experts say as little as 30 percent of the country’s forest cover remains, while logging continues to be a problem, file photo.

Experts say as little as 30 percent of the country’s forest cover remains, while logging continues to be a problem, file photo.

Authorities have detained three suspects in the murder of a journalist who was investigating illegal logging in Kratie province.

The suspects, one of them a military policeman, are accused of murdering Taing Try, who was shot once in the forehead around 1 am Sunday.

Taing Try contributed work to a number of newspapers and is a member of the Khmer Journalists for Democracy Association.

Threats, abuse and murder of journalists and activists, particularly those looking at illegal logging, are not uncommon in Cambodia, but arrests and prosecutions are.

Um Phy, deputy police chief for Kratie, said the three men arrested are La Narong, 32, Kem Pheakdey, 27, and Pin Heng, 31. Motives are unclear, but the three men will be sent to provincial court for an initial hearing Tuesday morning, he said.

Sok Sovan, president of Khmer Journalists for Democracy, said Taing Try had received death threats prior to the shooting.

At least 14 journalists have been killed since 1990. Prior to this, the most recent one occurred in 2012, when Chhey Udom, who was also investigating illegal logging, was killed.

In that same year, environmental activist Chut Wutty was shot dead in an altercation with security forces while escorting two journalists through an area known for illegal logging.

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