Ninety-one Chinese nationals accused of extorting money from victims in a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) scam were deported from Phnom Penh International Airport on Monday under the escort of 182 Chinese police personnel.
General Department of Immigration head of investigations Ouk Hay Seila told reporters that Chinese police from Guangzhou province repatriated the 91 suspects to China for further action.
They were transported on a plane specially flown-in for the purpose.
“We handed over 91 Chinese nationals, of which 21 were women, to Guangzhou provincial police forces to escort them back to China for their involvement in VoIP extortion scams,” he said.
The suspects were deported via an Airbus A330, Flight CZ3001/CZ3002, escorted by 182 Guangzhou provincial police personnel.
Hay Seila said the 91 suspects were arrested on September 29 at the Thansur Sokha Hotel within the Bokor National Park in Kampot province’s Toek Chhou district.
The arrest followed a tip-off from Chinese police.
Since 2014, Cambodian authorities have arrested and deported 14,909 people of 93 nationalities, 2,548 of them women, according to the department.
So far this year, the authorities have deported 982 people of 50 nationalities, 66 of them women. Of the figure, 373 Chinese suspects, 66 of them women, were arrested for their involvement in online extortion in Cambodia.
Another 34, seven of them women, were deported upon the request of Chinese authorities for their involvement in unspecified economic crimes in China.
Since 2014, the authorities have arrested 1,567 suspects, 309 of them women for crimes involving the VoIP scam.
As for economic crimes committed in China, 82 suspects were arrested, of which 10 were women. All the deportations were made upon the request of Chinese authorities.