Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Suspected illegal chemicals seized at port

Suspected illegal chemicals seized at port

Suspected illegal chemicals seized at port

120913_02a

Police officers inspect barrels of chemicals that were seized yesterday at the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port. Photo Supplied

More than 16 tonnes of an unrefined, unknown chemical liquid had been seized by Sihanoukville Autonomous Port customs officials on suspicion of being an illegal precursor chemical, police said yesterday.

San Bunthan, head of the provincial anti-drug office in Preah Sihanouk, said provincial customs officials had detected the liquid in a six-metre container on a Malaysian flagged ship coming from Sing­apore.

“We found it was a chemical liquid like a kind of glue for making shoes, but we are not clear what the substance will be used for, so we took some of the liquid to experts in a laboratory in Phnom Penh,” Bunthan said.

The 80 buckets of chemicals, totalling 16,400 kilograms, would remain at the port until clarification of the chemicals use was gained, he said.

The container had left Malaysia on August 13 and was later transferred to a new vessel in Singapore before arriving at the Sihanoukville autonomous port on August 23, Bunthan said.

On September 4, the director of the Xiang Rui Xiang Co Ltd company, which owns the container, sent a letter to director general of Customs and Excise Pen Simorn, asking him to check the contents of the container as the company had not received appropriate paperwork on the delivery.

The Xiang Rui Xiang director, Lou Helin, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Meas Virith, deputy secretary general at the National Authority for Combating Drugs, said yesterday that his office was yet to receive the liquid for laboratory testing to determine whether the enormous amount of chemical was a precursor chemical or a banned substance.

“If the chemical liquid is a precursor, we will keep it and take it to the court to proceed with the case,” he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Yuthana at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • 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

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group