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Teen ‘mastermind’ convicted

Teen ‘mastermind’ convicted

Member of a seven-person drug ring led by a 19-year-old woman were convicted of international trafficking yesterday and sentenced to between seven and 15 years in jail.

Phnom Penh Municipal Court judge Chaing Sinath said that 19-year-old Vann Chan received the harshest sentence – 15 years in jail and a 30 million riel (US$7,500) fine – for being the ringleader.

“Van Chan was the mastermind of this international drug trafficking ring,” the judge said in court yesterday.

Five of her accomplices – Tien Sokunthear, 30, Tien Simo, 25, Bun Neth (Vann Chan’s aunt), 40, Bun Pao, 34, and Tien Sothy, 32 – received sentences of 10 years in jail and were fined 20 million riel (US$5,000) each.

The final member of the drug ring, 19-year-old Lay Linda, also known as Toeur, was convicted to seven years in prison and fined 20 million riel (US$5,000).

An official at the Ministry of Interior’s Anti-drug Trafficking Office said that Vann Chhan, Bun Neth and Lay Linda were detained in January in Stung Treng after attempting to smuggle about 10 kilogrammes of methamphetamines into Cambodia from Laos.

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