The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Wednesday heard the case of a married couple who were caught with over 6kg of drugs after they were arrested in June this year in Phsar Thmey III commune, in Daun Penh district, Phnom Penh.
The accused Chy Ming, a 30-year-old Chinese national, told Judge Ly Sokleng through a translator that he is a driver and lives with his Cambodian wife Lim Sok Sreyna, 30, in the capital’s Chbar Ampov district. He made between $200 and $300 for each driving trip.
He said on June 3, this year, a man named Tan telephoned and told him to drive a Lexus RX350 from a Naga World II, in Daun Penh district, to a petrol station at Kbal Thnal Bridge. Tan told him that he would be paid $500 for the job. Ming said he checked the vehicle, but nothing looked strange.
During his journey, he violated a traffic light and hit a motorbike and attempted to bribe traffic police officials who arrived at the scene, but they declined.
He said he then decided to flee the scene but was hotly pursued by the traffic police officials. This, he said caused him to panic and speed along street 136 where he was stopped by residents and turned over to the pursuing traffic police officials.
He said when they checked the car, they retrieved a bag with six packets containing 11,680 ecstasy pills, weighing 6.32kg. Specialist police officials also checked his home and found a small packet containing drugs.
“When police checked the car, they told me there were drugs found in it. I ask the court to reduce my sentence as I am an innocent party,” he said.
Meanwhile, Sok Sreyna told Judge Sokleng that she has two children, aged two and seven months. She said she was unaware of the drugs in the car, but admitted she was an addict and encouraged her husband to take drugs as well.
“I ask the court to release me so that I can care for my children,” she said.
Ming was charged with illegally transporting drugs under Article 40 of the Law on Control of Drugs. Sok Sreyna was charged with violating Article 37 of the same law for enticing another person to use drugs.
In summing up the case, deputy prosecutor Riel Sophin said Ming denied the charge, which contradicted with what his wife’s confession that both were involved in drugs.
“I ask the court to uphold the charges of the investigating judge against the two,” Sophin said.
Defence lawyer Khun Khenkhema said Ming is just a driver and was unaware that the drugs were in the vehicle while his wife is just a drug user.
“I request the court to reduce the penalty for the husband and to release the wife because she has children to care for. She is just a drug user,” Khenkhema stressed.
Judge Sokleng said he will deliver the verdict on January 3.