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Police planted drugs, tycoon says

130117 02c
Tycoon Tan Senghak appears at the Supreme Court yesterday for questioning. Photograph: Vireak Mai/Phnom Penh Post

The Supreme Court yesterday questioned local tycoon Tan Senghak, a former adviser to Senate President Chea Sim, in regard to drug trafficking charges handed down after he was arrested at an apparent meth party at his home in November.

After the hearing, which was held to examine the possibility of releasing him on bail, Senghak admitted to being a methamphetamine user since his 2007 release from Prey Sar prison – where he was jailed on a long list of charges in 2005 – but denied the charges of trafficking, and accused police of planting drugs in his home.  

Senghak said he started using meth “because after I was released from prison, when I telephoned [my friends], they seemingly ignored my calls, and they said that they did not want to talk with a person who had been in jail like me, because it would make them unlucky.”

“From that time, I dared not meet them. I only stayed home, and started using ice in my house,” he said.  

Senghak added that he was trying to drink 10 cups of coffee every day in prison, in an attempt to get clean.

During his arrest, he continued, police fired indiscriminately through his home’s windows and doors, despite official police statements that they only fired three shots in the air as a warning.

“Police opened fire into my house like they had a fight with enemies on the frontline,” he said.  

“During their raid, I saw one anti-drug police officer brought a black package of drugs, and another police officer brought related drug materials to put in my house, in order to accuse me and arrest me,” he added.  

However, Major General Sok Chour, deputy director of the Anti-Drug Police Department, denied the accusations, calling them a pretext to avoid charges, and noting that court prosecutors had accompanied police on the raid.

 

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

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