Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Men accused of smuggling 17 labourers

Men accused of smuggling 17 labourers

Men accused of smuggling 17 labourers

ANTI-HUMAN trafficking officials in Battambang province said Sunday that they broke up a labour-smuggling ring last week, arresting five men who had attempted to sneak 17 Cambodians across the border with Thailand on the evening of May 19.

The five men, who were arrested in Sampov Loun district’s Chhrey Sima commune, were apprehended while trying to transport the would-be illegal migrants across the border into Thailand on motorbikes, said Born Vannara, deputy director of the Interior Ministry’s anti-human trafficking department in Battambang. He added that the suspects had been under surveillance for about a year.

“Those five men were sent to the provincial court and are now being temporarily held at the provincial prison,” he said. “I don’t know when the court will charge them, because we need to carry out an investigation.”

He said he had advised the 17 prospective labourers to return to their homes in Battambang, Pursat, Siem Reap and Kampong Speu provinces, and had warned them not to try to cross the border illegally in the future.

The case is the second this year in which arrests have been made in connection with labour-smuggling, Born Vannara said, and added that there had only been two such cases in 2009.

“We arrested two masterminds last year, and this year so far we have arrested seven people,” he said.

Krouch Chhanpov, provincial head of the rights group Adhoc’s women’s rights programme, commended the officials for carrying out the arrests.

“I want the authorities and police to continue cracking down on [labour-smuggling] rings and to arrest anyone who facilitates the trafficking of people,” she said.

She added that she suspects that such cases are on the rise, though she noted that Adhoc has not conducted research to support this claim.

Lim Mony, the national head of Adhoc’s women’s rights programme, called on the government to crack down on operations facilitating work for companies overseas illegally.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh