Real Estate Agent Charged in Bookstore Theft, Murder

A real estate agent accused of planning a robbery at a Phnom Penh bookstore that led to the fatal shooting of a soldier moonlighting as a security guard was charged on Tuesday with theft and conspiracy to commit murder.

Zhao Jiwey, 44, a Chinese national who was arrested on November 9 in Pur Senchey district, was charged in the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, district judicial police chief Chea Sovann said.

“He has confessed,” he said.

He said Mr. Zhao had scoped out the bookstore in advance of the November 6 robbery, and that the physical evidence against him was a gun cover, an umbrella and two sets of clothes.

Police are still seeking two men accused of robbing the store of about $500 and shooting the soldier, Yeng Rinang, 23, while fleeing a mob that gave chase through a housing complex.

Mr. Zhao, who told police that he knew the bookstore owner had recently received a cash transfer from China, was set to be detained today to await his trial, Mr. Sovann said.

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