Ministry of Interior police is investigating a kidnapping case involving 11 Chinese suspects and a Chinese victim in Chhbar Ampov district’s Nirouth commune in Phnom Penh.

Mom Chek, the head of the Legal Procedure Bureau at the Ministry of Interior’s Criminal Investigations Department, said on Sunday that his expert has already questioned the 11 Chinese men.

He believes there could be more related suspects and requested that the Phnom Penh Municipal Court allow him to detain the suspects for an additional 24 hours. The eleven were first detained on Friday.

Chek said: “According to legal measures, it was time to send them to court on Sunday. Because it is a criminal case that we have not fully investigated yet, we requested the court to allow us to detain them for an additional 24 hours.”

Hem Bonda, the head of the Serious Crimes Bureau at the ministry’s Criminal Investigations Department, said on Sunday that before detaining the suspects, police received a complaint from a Chinese man who is the victim’s friend. The man said a group of Chinese nationals kidnapped his friend on Street 956 in Nirouth commune.

After receiving the complaint, the ministry’s Criminal Investigations Department deputy director Cheav Vibol led a crackdown in collaboration with a prosecutor on Friday in Nirouth commune.

Citing the victim, Bonda said he came to Cambodia to seek a job. He answered a job announcement online, which was posted by the suspects. The victim contacted them and travelled to meet them in the commune.

The suspects allegedly handcuffed the victim and told him to call his family in China to send money in exchange for him. But the victim’s family asked for help from the victim’s friend, who filed the complaint which alerted police to the situation.

When police reached the scene, they found the victim handcuffed but not injured. The victim was nervous and trembling, Bonda said.

The suspect initially thought that the police were part of the suspects’ group. The victim has recovered with the help of the Chinese Association of Cambodia.

“He can now talk on the phone as normal and feels better,” Bonda said.