Chan Sreynuch, the owner of Mikasa Coiffure and Beauty, a well-known salon in the capital, spent last night at national military police headquarters, accused of moonlighting as a high-end madam.
Her arrest yesterday followed a month-long military police stake-out.
Sreynuch, 38, known affectionately as Mom, was arrested in the Sre Leap Hotel, in Daun Penh district, around 6:30pm, on suspicion of human trafficking, according to the national military police spokesman Kheng Tito.
“Chan Sreynuch is an active leader of human trafficking in Cambodia,” Tito said.
According to him, Sreynuch would lead young women — often aspiring singers and students — to her salon, then connect them with wealthy businessmen.
Three of her manicured and coiffed callgirls were also detained at the hotel, along with her bodyguard, Kong Chandoung, who was later released.
Sreynuch, who is yet to be charged, was being held at the national military police headquarters following questioning at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, Tito said.
The other women were sent to Phnom Penh Municipal Hall’s rehabilitation centre for “re-education”.
Sea Sambath, deputy commander of the national military police, said his forces had followed and observed Sreynuch’s activities for a month.
“According to our military police’s investigation, Chan Sreynuch was a human trafficker and also a broker who [solicited] singers or other girls who were her customers,” Sambath said.
“They would come to have their make-up done at the Mikasa shop before having sex with people in hotels or guesthouses in Cambodia,” he said.
Sreynuch, her defence lawyer, and the court could not be reached for comments.
To contact the reporter on this story: Buth Reaksmey Kongkea at firstname.lastname@example.org