Restaurateur kills friend and dismembers body because 'she could not repay debt'

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A restaurant owner murdered her friend before chopping up her body with a meat cleaver and keeping some of the body parts in a freezer.

Tim Sophal, 35, was arrested on Monday, a week after her hairdresser friend Kim Yan Neang, 40, went missing in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Sophal, who owns the well-known Alamo Cafe, claimed she owed Kim money for months and rather than settling the debt, she attacked and strangled her friend to death.

The incident came to the light when horrified locals found a severed arm and leg floating in the city’s Mekong River on Sunday.

Tim Sophal, 35, has admitted murdering her friend and dismembering her body

 

Police were alerted and later identified the body parts as coming from Kim who had been reported missing by her 17-year-old daughter, Pich Seav Mey.

Pich claimed her mother had been unreachable and went missing since June 3, and said she was last seen leaving home with Sophal’s seven-year-old child who stayed overnight.

Officers arrested Sophal and she later admitted dismembering Kim with a meat cleaver.

Victim Kim Yan Neang

 

Video shows Sophal, who was locked in handcuffs, leads the police to the riverfront area where she allegedly disposed of the body parts.

She then returns to her cafe and tells the police that she hid Kim’s limbs in a freezer covered by bags of frozen French fries and rice.

Sophal, who is married to a western husband, told police that it was ‘easy’ top chop up the body because she is ‘experienced with cooking pork’.

Tim explained to the police that she hid the victim’s body in her restaurant freezer

She told the police that she strangled Kim to death

Stunned locals are now worried that some of the body parts being served up in dishes at the restaurant.

The police have retrieved Kim’s right foot and right arm from the river and believed more body parts remained in the freezer.

Major Ly Savuth, a district military police officer, said police suspected that the body parts found in the river may have been the victim’s immediately questioned Sophal.

He added: ”After her arrest and during interrogation, the suspect admitted committing the crime.

“She confessed that she killed the victim because she had owed her money for several months and could not repay her.”

She led the police to the riverfront and pointed out the area where she dumped the body parts

 

The Royal Gendarmerie of Cambodia said in a statement said it was a ‘brutal murder’ and the suspect had confessed.

They said: “The Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF), in cooperation with the specialised force of the Phnom Penh Military Offensive Office began searching and established this was a murder case.

“A friend of the victim was detained by police later in the evening on June 10.

“The murderer brutally killed the victim by cutting her body into pieces.

“Parts of the body were put in black trash bags and thrown from the shores into the river.”

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