Less than a week into the role, Preah Sihanouk’s new police chief, Chuon Narin, has announced the early results of a crackdown on crimes involving foreigners, calling them the “main problem” facing the coastal city.
Speaking to the Post yesterday, Narin, who previously served as deputy police chief in Phnom Penh before taking up the reins in Sihanoukville on April 6, said three of the cases involved criminals targeting foreigners for robbery and theft, while the fourth saw a British national arrested for drug trafficking.
“I came here and I have checked, and consider drug trafficking and robbery against foreigners to be the main problems,” Narin said. “I will focus my work on these two problems to ensure the safety of foreigners.”
Under his leadership, Sihanoukville police have busted three Cambodians accused of robbing a foreigner, a suspect accused of stealing computer equipment from a Chinese tourist, and three people captured for their involvement in thefts of high-value items such as cameras and jewellery.
Meanwhile, 33-year-old Robert John Skillin was arrested on drug charges and is now awaiting a court appearance.
Authorities have also arrested four Cambodian bar staff accused of seriously injuring a Turkish customer following an argument.
Narin has pledged to put together a complete crime-fighting program following a more comprehensive review of the situation. Narin was sent in to lead the city’s police force after it was harshly criticised on April 1 by Interior Minister Sar Kheng, following a spate of violent incidents in which foreigners were involved.
The following day, then-police chief Seang Kosal was jettisoned out of the role and Narin was announced as his replacement.