Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Blackmail scam targets officials




Blackmail scam targets officials

Blackmail scam targets officials

District governors are finding themselves on the receiving end of blackmail attempts by individuals allegedly impersonating Interior Ministry and Anti-corruption Unit (ACU) officials, according to a letter issued by Ministry of Interior secretary of state Sak Setha.

Setha’s letter explained that the district governors of Kampong Chhnang’s Cholkiri district and Battambang’s Roka Kiri district were blackmailed on March 4 and March 12, respectively. Setha detailed how extortionists “used the names of senior officials” to demand cash from the governors in return for a guarantee they wouldn’t be fired or jailed.

Neither governor, the letter went on to say, obliged the blackmailers, and the ministry has since dispatched police to investigate.

Roka Kiri District Governor Pich Malai said yesterday that one of his blackmailers assumed the persona of Sak Setha.

“He called and told me that he was Sak Setha, secretary of state for the Ministry of Interior,” said Malai, going on to describe how the mystery caller insinuated that Malai was involved in corrupt practices and instructed him to call another number.

The voice on the end of the next phone number claimed to be an ACU official, Malai said.

He claims the voice said the deputy provincial governor had been arrested and had denounced Malai. Both the purported ACU official and the Sak Setha impersonator told Malai he would have to pay them in order to make the accusations go away.

He consulted the Interior Ministry’s Mao Chandara, who assured him he was the victim of fraudsters, he said. However, Malai claims he saw through the extortionists on his own.

“After I questioned him twice, I did not think he was Sak Setha,” said Malai.

MOST VIEWED

  • Thousands attend CNRP-organised pro-democracy vigil in South Korea

    Thousands of supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) on Saturday gathered in the South Korean city of Gwangju to hold a candlelight demonstration calling for the “liberation” of democracy in Cambodia. Yim Sinorn, a CNRP member in South Korea, said on

  • US Embassy: Chinese trade does not help like the West’s

    The US Embassy in Phnom Penh on Friday said relations between China and Cambodia did not create jobs or help industry when compared to the trade between the Kingdom and the US. “About 87 per cent of trade [with China] are Chinese imports, which do not

  • Vietnamese land-grabbers held

    Following a provincial court order, Ratanakkiri Military Police on April 16 arrested 12 Vietnamese nationals accused of crossing the border into Cambodia and illegally clearing forest land. The accused are now being detained at Phnom Svay prison in the province. Ratanakkiri military police commander Thav Yen told

  • Eight people sent to court over violent protest

    Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities on Sunday sent eight people to court for blocking National Road 4 and using violence against authorities in a land dispute in Prey Nop district’s Bit Traing commune. Four police officers and two commune security guards sustained injuries when the protesters