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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Officials target Vietnamese-owned salons

Officials target Vietnamese-owned salons

Vietnamese-run beauty and barber shops in Phnom Penh will be the target of wider police investigations after a raid over the weekend resulted in three arrests and the rescue of 10 Vietnamese girls aged between 16 and 20 years old, officials said.

Police allege the girls had been trafficked from their Vietnamese families living in Cambodia and were being kept as virtual sex slaves at the Mey Long Beauty and Barber Shop in the capital’s Tuol Kork district.

“Two female Vietnamese nationals and one Chinese man were arrested for human trafficking activities,” Lieutenant Colonel Keo Thea told the Post. “They have already been detained at Prey Sar Prison.”

Hong Hokchhay, 53, and his wife Chan Ka, 49, a Vietnamese national and 18-year-old fellow Vietnamese national Pham Thuthuthav were all detained on Saturday.

The trio was charged with serious human-trafficking offences and operation of illegal prostitution, Thea said. The charged persons face between seven and 15 years in prison under the Cambodian Criminal Code.

The rescued girls have been returned to their families, police said.

“We now are searching and investigating a number of other suspected Vietnamese beauty and barbers shop in Phnom Penh. These shops are also used to bring young girls from Vietnam for sale into illegal prostitution or for having sex with foreign people in Cambodia,” Thea said.

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

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