Police in Preah Sihanouk province have shut down a bar, believed to have been used as a drug den, after 53 patrons comprised of foreigners and Cambodians were arrested for various narcotic-related crimes early on Thursday.
In the 1:45am operation, the anti-drug police raided the Skyline bar in commune 4, in Preah Sihanouk town where they arrested 17 Indonesian nationals, 10 Chinese, and two Koreans, with the rest being locals who worked in the bar, casino and restaurant.
Provincial deputy police chief Sun Sophat said among those arrested were narcotic users and drug dealers. Police also confiscated 26 packages of ketamine and ecstasy pills, which were hidden inside a sofa and the bar’s toilet.
“The suspects’ urine was tested and proved they were on drugs,” he said, adding that police are interrogating all those arrested.
However, until Thursday afternoon, only 22 suspects were still being questioned.
Those arrested confessed that they consumed drugs. One of them claimed he bought the narcotics from an unknown man at the bar.
“Based on their confessions, police also called in the bar owner Kruy Phanna. We are still in the process of questioning him,” he said.
Provincial deputy prosecutor Lim Bun Heng decided to close the bar temporarily until investigations are completed.
In an unrelated incident, a policeman’s arm was hacked during an anti-drug operation at Trapaing Chrov village, Kaheng commune, in Kampong Speu province’s Samrong Tong district on Wednesday.
Samrong Tong district police chief Hut Sophal said the incident happened when the police, together with the provincial prosecutor, launched an operation to nab about 15 men who were involved in drug activities.
One of the suspects who tried to escape slashed the policeman’s arm with a sword, he said.
“Among those arrested were three drug dealers. Villagers were concerned about their activities as they caused problems in the area,” Sophal said.
In the operation, 22 packets of drugs, four mobile phones, four knives and two home-made rifles, were seized.
Police could only identify three suspects – Vorn Ratanak, 29, Pov Touch, 35, and Chhim Virak, 30.
Provincial deputy police chief Mat Thuch said the suspects will be sent to court on Friday for further action.