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Officials tangled in drug czar’s web

Officials tangled in drug czar’s web

Senior leaders at the Anti-Corruption Unit are investigating more than 1,000 officials implicated in the drug racket of former anti-drug czar Moek Dara and his associates, the ACU deputy president said yesterday.

While giving a lecture on anti-corruption law to about 300 students and professors at the Royal University of Law and Economics in Phnom Penh, ACU deputy president Sean Borath said that 1,500 officials had been implicated in facilitating Moek Dara’s drug operations.  

Earlier this month, the former secretary-general of the National Authority for Combating Drugs was sentenced to life in prison and fined US$300,000 for taking bribes in exchange for releasing dealers from prison and pocketing drugs from raids.

“We have been examining case by case, and some of them [the 1,500 officials] were already arrested and some others are under investigation,” Sean Borath told the Post by phone.

He also said that the ACU would not be able to arrest all of the 1,500 implicated officials due the overcrowding prison situation in Cambodia, but did not give any alternative solutions.

Investigations into corruption had already saved approximately US$6 million for the government, he added, saying funds set aside for irregular spending had been transferred to the national budget.

ACU president Om Yentieng declined to comment on the speech made by his deputy.