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Police hunt drug bosses

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Police seize drums of safrole oil, which is used to produce the drug ecstasy, during a raid in Phnom Penh on Wednesday.

Cambodian police are pursuing two leaders of a drug ring after arresting 11 people and seizing more than 3,000 litres of safrole oil on Tuesday and Wednesday, Brigadier General Pen Rath, deputy chief of Phnom Penh municipal police, said yesterday. 

Authorities believe the two alleged ringleaders, both Vietnamese nationals, are attempting to flee Cambodia, prompting police to alert Vietnamese, Thai and Lao law enforcement officials to the suspects’ flight.  

“They are now escaping from Cambodia to Vietnam,” Pen Rath said. “To arrest them, our Cambodian police have been informing all neighbouring countries to cooperated and intervene . . . especially Vietnamese and Lao authorities.”

Brigadier General Touch Naruth, chief of Phnom Penh municipal police, emphasised that investigations revealed that the drug ring had international ambitions, planning to export both ecstasy and the raw materials needed for its production.

“They were a network of global drug dealers,” he said.  

Police released a list of the identities of the suspects, which included Cambodian and Vietnamese nationals.  

The Cambodian suspects were Bin Sopheak, San Sambath, Ek Phanny, Seng Sothearath and Seng Sothearith.

Nguven Voeuk Vanh, Nguven Phoeung, Nguven Ngoeng, Thou Tam, Chov Yangdaing and Chov Yakthaing were named as the Vietnamese suspects.

All 11 will be sent to court to be charged in the near future, Pen Rath said.



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