E ACH of the three foreigners arrested last week for possessing heroine may face imprisonment
of more than five years if convicted, according Nup Sophon, investigating judge of
the Municipal Court.
Sophon gave no specific date for prosecution of the three but said that it would
take place soon. He said that the trio were now in T-3 prison after they underwent
a preliminary hearing on March 15.
Jamaican Adeolu Azzeez, 27, and Nigerian Ike Chukwu, 30, and Joseph Quoman, 30, whose
nationality is not clear were nabbed during a police raid in the Tai Seng hotel on
The police seized 700 grams of heroin and equipment such as needles, string, a pair
of pincers and a hammer which they said were used by the traffickers to remake their
boots for hiding the drug.
"Our police worked very hard to achieve this operation and we'll do more in
cracking down on the traffickers in the future," said Interior Ministry's Spokesman
The clamp down on the traffickers came on the heels of President Bill Clinton's decision
to put Cambodia on the list of 31 countries producing and transiting drugs.
Premiers Norodom Ranariddh and Hun Sen retaliated by demanding that the US be placed
as a country of high drug users. Describing Clinton's move as unfair to the Kingdom
which is only a victim of the users and suppliers, they said the US should do more
in fighting drug consumption in its own country.
During his visit on March 14, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kent Wiedemann
told Foreign Minister Ung Huot that Cambodia's inclusion in the drug list "was
simply a statement of fact and not meant to single [Cambodia] out for criticism.".
Wiedemann praised Cambodian government's efforts in combating drugs and pledged further
"He also noted that the United States fully acknowledges that efforts must be
made to reduce the demand for narcotics in consuming countries", including the
US itself, said the press release.