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Complaints filed as car buyers ‘cheated’ in Phnom Penh

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Seng Hout​ garage is located in Por Sen Chey district’s Chaom Chao commune. Facebook

Complaints filed as car buyers ‘cheated’ in Phnom Penh

Many people from across the capital who bought cars from a company called Seng Hout have filed complaints with authorities claiming they have been cheated, according to an alleged victim on Sunday.

Seng Hout, owned by Seng Sopheak, is located in Por Sen Chey district’s Chaom Chao commune.

Loeung Simeng, one of some 50 alleged victims, told The Post on Sunday that in late 2018 he agreed a contract to buy a car from Seng Hout in monthly instalments. He said he had paid 30 to 40 per cent of the total price but had not yet received the car.

Recently the Cambodia Driver Development Association (CDDA) posted number plates on social media saying people are required to return the cars to the association before March 31, otherwise the cars would be confiscated or they would be charged with stealing the association’s cars.

The buyers were shocked at the post and met with the company which promised to resolve the issue, but nothing has happened so far, Simeng said.

“We only want the owner of Seng Hout to compensate us for the deposits. We are worried about the association’s post – that they’ll charge us for using the cars even though we haven’t,” he said.

Last Tuesday and Wednesday, many people protest outside Seng Hout, some in tears.

Chaom Chao commune chief Va Sarong told The Post on Sunday that the company’s owner had been summoned to hold talks on several occasions but had still not come forward.

“If the owner does not come forward to make a compromise, we will forward the case to the upper level and the people will also lodge their own lawsuits to a court to solve it for them,” he said.

Sopheak could not be reached for comment but he took to Facebook on Sunday to claim that he was also a victim. He said he had been paying monthly instalments to the CDDA, whose president is Phang Sokea.

He said Sokea had been provisionally detained by the court accused of defrauding some $3 million from a Japanese company and the cars had been taken away by the association.

“After the incident, I contacted the Japanese company directly to resolve the problem because I am also a victim. So to solve it, I have to continue to cooperate with them by collecting 43 cars that I have leased from the association,” he said.

Man Sophal, a lawyer representing Seng Hout, told The Post on Sunday that Sopheak would come forward to solve the situation on Monday.

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