Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Chinese held in S’ville club drug raid

Chinese held in S’ville club drug raid

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Police raided a Chinese-owned karaoke parlour in Sihanoukville on Thursday, detained more than 100 mostly Chinese nationals and seized an unspecified amount of drugs. Photo supplied

Chinese held in S’ville club drug raid

Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities raided a Chinese-owned karaoke parlour in Sihanoukville’s Commune 4 on Thursday and detained more than 100 patrons, most of whom were Chinese nationals.

Provincial hall spokesman Kheang Phearum told The Post the police also seized an unspecified amount of drugs while raiding the Obama KTV club at around 3am.

The operation, led by new provincial governor Kuoch Chamroeun, netted at least 150 patrons, who have since been sent to provincial police headquarters for questioning.

Phearum said the latest raid was based on a careful investigation and followed a clampdown on two other nightclubs in the city.

“We are strengthening security and [public] order in the province … We will crackdown on other places that allow illegal activities,” he said.

Provincial police chief Chuon Narin told said technical officers were questioning the patrons, most of whom were Chinese tourists, and testing their urine for drug substances. He said police were working to identify the drug ringleaders and other suspects.

“We have detained all suspects including security guards and parking attendants at the club while an investigation is ongoing. We are dealing with this step by step. First, we administer a urine test.

“Then, we separate them into groups [to ease the probe] – parking attendants, cleaners, generator operators, hostesses, supervisors and guests,” he said.

Narin declined to specify the exact amount of drugs confiscated, citing an ongoing investigation. He said most of the club’s patrons were caught consuming Ketamine, commonly referred to as Ice.

“We have to thoroughly examine the drugs. It is not much because when we raided the club, much of the contraband had already been consumed for hours. We are testing and packaging them,” he said, declining to identify the club owner.

Chieb Sotheary, the provincial coordinator for rights group Adhoc, applauded the clampdown and urged the authorities to continue their efforts in keeping Cambodian youths drugs-free.

She pointed out that some nightclubs in both the capital and provinces are found to have allowed drug consumption and dealing on the premises.

“Authorities must not tolerate drug dealing and consumption in their crackdowns. They need to punish them severely in accordance with the law.

“They must also investigate to determine the identity of the business owners behind the illicit activities. Strip clubs must not be allowed either. And in case a drug ringleader has been arrested, there should be a public announcement,” she said.

A report issued by the Preah Sihanouk provincial police earlier this month said there are 41 Chinese-owned karaoke clubs in the province.

The same report also said more than 90 per cent of all businesses throughout the province – including hotels, casinos, restaurants and massage parlours – are Chinese-owned.

MOST VIEWED

  • First deportees of the year touch down in Cambodia

    Twenty-five Cambodian-Americans landed in Phnom Penh on Wednesday, marking the first such deportations of the year. “On Wednesday, US law enforcement authorities deported 25 Cambodian nationals that immigration judges determined had no legal basis to remain in the US,” said Arend Zwartjes, spokesperson for the US

  • Qatar Airways to connect Doha and Siem Reap town

    Qatar Airways Company QCSC has announced a new route connecting Qatar’s capital Doha with Siem Reap, a move hailed by local officials as a significant step to boost tourist numbers. A Qatar Airways representative, speaking at the Kuwait Aviation Show, announced on Thursday that

  • Sokha defence denies Tech’s claims

    ON DAY two of Kem Sokha’s treason trial, lawyers for the government said the defence had raised questions in an attempt to allow their client to make a public statement and a conclusion to the case, something his legal team denied. Ky Tech, a

  • Call for boycott of Angkor unacceptable

    Dear Editor, I wish to express my strong disagreement on the article published by Traveller for their website with the title Best places to go in 2020: 12 destinations you should avoid. Below is my opinion of the article. It is obviously free for the Traveller to

  • Probe underway after wreckage of drone with Chinese characters found

    Air Force Command spokesman Prak Sokha said on Sunday that investigations are underway regarding the wreckage of a drone that was recovered in Koh Kong province’s Koh Sdech commune in Kiri Sakor district. The wreckage has been taken to the capital for further examination,

  • Good governance needed for sustainable growth

    Cambodia is one of the most successful countries in achieving high and rapid economic growth in Asia and the world. The average 7 per cent of annual GDP growth in the past two decades has lifted millions of people out of poverty. In 2015, Cambodia graduated from