Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Extortion ring busted in Sihanoukville

Extortion ring busted in Sihanoukville

Chinese nationals sit on the floor of a Preah Sihanouk provincial police station on Saturday after they were arrested for their involvement in money extortion.
Chinese nationals sit on the floor of a Preah Sihanouk provincial police station on Saturday after they were arrested for their involvement in money extortion. General Department of Immigration

Extortion ring busted in Sihanoukville

Nearly 170 Chinese nationals were arrested in Preah Sihanouk province on Saturday for allegedly using an internet-based telephone system to extort money from victims back in China, police said yesterday.

Major General Uk Hai Sela, investigations chief at the Ministry of Interior’s Immigration Department, said the 166 suspects – 18 of them women – were arrested with the help of Chinese authorities in raids on a Sihanoukville villa and guesthouse. The suspects are currently being detained for questioning in Phnom Penh.

“They were all Chinese nationals from mainland China,” Hai Sela said yesterday. “They were arrested when our police forces, cooperating with Chinese Interpol police, raided a luxury villa and a guesthouse in Preah Sihanouk province.

After their arrests, we confiscated a number of VoIP [Voice over Internet Protocol] telephones, mobile phones and other related materials.”

The suspects are expected to be repatriated on Tuesday, according to the order from the minister of the Interior Ministry, Hai Sela said.

He added that China would send an airplane to collect the suspects.

Representatives of the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh could not be reached for comment yesterday.

The arrests of such alleged VoIP extortion rings are not uncommon.

In August, a similar bust in Svay Rieng province yielded 22 arrests.

MOST VIEWED

  • Man arrested for fake PM endorsement

    The owner of currency exchange company GCG Asia Co Ltd was temporarily detained by the court yesterday for attempted fraud after Prime Minister Hun Sen reacted to the company using his name and pictures to allege his endorsement of the firm. Phnom Penh Municipal Court

  • Archeologists find ancient phallic statue

    An archeological team has found a metre-long tipless stone linga (penis) of the Hindu deity Shiva in the foundations of a temple in Kratie province’s historical Samphu Borak area, a former capital of the pre-Angkor Empire Chenla period. Thuy Chanthourn, the deputy director of

  • Sihanoukville authority orders structure dismantled

    The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration has ordered owners of two unauthorised construction sites to immediately dismantle them and warned of legal action if the owners failed to comply. Ly Chet Niyom, development management and construction bureau chief at the provincial hall, told The Post on

  • Police seek arrest of Chinese ‘gang’

    Cambodian police remain on the lookout for 20 Chinese nationals who earlier this month posted a video clip threatening to stoke insecurity in Preah Sihanouk province, though the Chinese Embassy in Phnom Penh maintained the group posed no threats to Cambodia’s national security. National Police