Grenade Attack Mastermind Again Challenges Conviction, Sentencing

2 min read
Sok Kimly walks through alcohol spray as she arrives to the Supreme Court on October 12, 2021. (Ouch Sony/VOD)
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The mastermind of two failed murder attempts on her boyfriend was back at the Supreme Court on Friday contesting a 15-year sentence handed by the Appeal Court after a reduction on her initial life sentence.

The woman is potentially on her last appeal after a string of hearings that has seen the cases make their way up and down the Cambodian court system. Sok Kimly was convicted for attempting to murder her boyfriend in 2015 in an incident involving a gun, and in 2016 in a hired grenade attack. The attempted killings were spurred by Kimly’s suspicions that her boyfriend was not loyal. 

A Phnom Penh court convicted her in both cases and sentenced her to life in prison for the grenade case, with the Appeal Court then dropping the sentences to 30 years. The Supreme Court in October 2021 dropped the 2015 assassination case but sent the grenade attack for retrial, where the Appeal Court dropped her sentence to 15 years in May.

Kimly was back in the Supreme Court on Friday to appeal the 15-year sentence.

Yon Bunna, Kimly’s defense lawyer, said his client had no intention to kill the boyfriend, Ear Lyhour, and that she loved him a lot which is why she got jealous at the prospect of him having another lover.

He then went on to illustrate how she could have killed Lyhour had she wished to assassinate him.

“If she wanted to kill him, she could have many means, such as just using one pill she could kill him because they slept together,” he said, adding that she could have done this at any time.

Bunna added that she only wanted to scare Lyhour and that Bun Pheakdey, one of her accomplices in the gun case, went beyond her expectations. He added that Kimly was not serious about killing Lyhour because she did not give Pheakdey $1,000 for a gun as previously alleged and only met the Pheakdey before the attempted killing but not the three others in the case. 

Kimly said she only wanted to threaten her boyfriend to stop going out at night and now realizes that it was stupid and she had learned her mistake. 

“Why did I give them money to kill the person I love? I know my mistake. Please give me the opportunity to look after my mother and daughter,” she said.

Supreme Court deputy prosecutor Ouk Kimseth said there was an intention to injure the victim but that Kimly had been honest with the court and the court could consider the mitigating circumstance of her family responsibilities.

Seven accomplices have been found guilty in those two cases: Pheakdey and three others from the gun case are all serving 30 years in prison and her three accomplices in the grenade attack, all Vietnamese nationals, are in prison for 10 years.

Presiding judge Nil Nonn is set to announce a verdict on July 29.

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