The Phnom Penh Municipal Court has remanded businessman Duong Ngiep – who was also a senior official at the Ministry of Interior prior to his arrest – in custody at Prey Sar Prison over alleged land fraud.

Municipal police minor crimes bureau chief Bun Satya told The Post briefly that Ngiep was arrested on February 14.

“The Phnom Penh municipal police has acted on an arrest warrant issued by the court,” Satya said.

Before his arrest, Ngiep posted a video on Facebook on February 7 accusing the municipal court of handling his case improperly and falsely accusing him of cheating Taiwanese nationals, a court spokesperson said in a statement on February 10.

The prosecutor first opened an investigation into Ngiep on November 4, 2020, in accordance with the introductory submission dated June 21, 2021, on charges of fraud and failing to fulfil the obligation to tradable instruments on the facts of selling property.

Ngiep is alleged to have sold $7,305,000 worth of land to Taiwan buyers named as Chih Yu Yen and Yao Ching King, who later discovered that Ngiep had no such land to offer them.

In order to mediate the dispute, Ngiep issued three cheques, alleged to have been worth $1,650,000, $3,655,000 and $2,000,000, which bounced.

During the investigation, the investigating judge examined the evidence and questioned Ngiep, eventually deciding not to detain him.

Instead of placing Ngiep under court supervision on the order dated August 13, 2021, he was required to post bail of $5,305,000 to the municipal court, which would be held for one month.

But Ngiep failed to make the payment and evaded the obligation of judicial review. The investigating judge subsequently took further action under Article 230 of the Criminal Code.