An online reporter was sent to Kratie provincial police headquarters after being arrested in connection with the trafficking of 11 small packages of methamphetamines at a guesthouse in Kbal Snuol village of Snuol commune in Snuol district.
Snuol district police chief Chan Sokim said on May 31 that the suspect – identified as Aun Seth, 41, a resident of Suong Lech village of Suong commune in Tbong Khmum district of Tbong Khmum province – was a reporter for media outlet KTV Online.
“We arrested the suspect while he was packaging drugs to distribute to others. We followed legal procedures and sent both a report and the suspect to the provincial police headquarters for further action,” he said.
Sokim said that prior to the arrest of the suspect, his officers had received information that a man suspected of drug trafficking was at a guesthouse named Sabay Sabay, located in the village of Kbal Snuol.
He said that after receiving the report his police officers – in cooperation with the Snuol commune police force – arrived at the guesthouse at around 6pm on May 30 and entered the suspect’s room, whereupon the police arrested the suspect immediately.
Sokim stated that when the police raided the suspect’s room in the guesthouse he was alone.
He said that after the arrest the police checked the suspect’s backpack and found eleven gram-size packages of what appeared to be methamphetamines, a glass pipe for smoking the drugs, a mobile phone and other materials used for smoking the drugs. He was also carrying his official Cambodian press card.
Sokim said the suspect had been imprisoned in Kampong Cham province once before, but he did not tell the police what the offense was and no further information was available at this time.
He added that the suspect rode his motorbike from Tbong Khmum province to Snuol district in Kratie province to distribute drugs. Police also asked the suspect to identify his accomplices, but he claimed that there were no accomplices.
Ministry of Information spokesman Phos Sovann told The Post on May 31 that the KTV Online was registered with the ministry, but the publisher of KTV Online was Khom Kang.
“For those who are doing illegal things – legal measures will be applied. If they do something against the code of professional ethics for journalists then their press credentials will be revoked,” he said.
“We are reviewing the code of conduct and holding a workshop on it soon. When journalists are suspected of wrongdoing, sometimes the ministry calls their publisher and warns them. If authorities officially charge the journalist they are then suspended,” Sovann said.