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Heroin smuggling charges stick

The Court of Appeal yesterday upheld the Phnom Penh Municipal Court’s 2011 decision to sentence a Taiwanese man to seven years in prison after he was caught attempting to smuggle roughly one kilogram of heroin through the Phnom Penh International Airport.

Judge Um Sarith said Taiwanese national Kuo Dayu, 44, former general manager of the RCI Garment Factory in Preah Sihanouk Province, was indeed guilty of international drug trafficking under Article 32 of the Cambodian anti-drug law.

“Therefore, the Court of Appeal decides to uphold Phnom Penh Municipal Court’s decision, and orders to continue detaining the suspect in prison,” said Judge Sarith.

In addition to his prison term, Kuo was fined 15 million riel ($3,750).

In December of 2011, Kuo was arrested by customs and immigration police at Phnom Penh International after police discovered in his luggage three packages of heroin – weighing a total of 999.5 grams – while he was preparing to leave for Taiwan.  

“The suspect has the right to appeal to the Supreme Court... if he does not accept this verdict,” Sarith added.

Kuo and his defence lawyer were not present at the Court of Appeal yesterday, and could not be reached for comment.

However, during his appeal hearing on December 11, Kuo denied any involvement in the crime.

 

To contact the reporter on this story: Buth Reaksmey Kongkea at reaksmeykongkea.buth@phnompenhpost.com
 

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