Five men were sentenced to 10 years in prison by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday for selling nearly 1 kilogram of crystal methamphetamine to undercover police officers in the capital’s Tuol Kork district last April.
Judge Im Vannak said that in addition to the prison time, defendants Sok Uy, 40; Chea Meth, 39; Kong Vireak, 52; Keo Paly, 41; and Mey Sokha, 51, were also ordered to pay fines of 30 million riel (about $7,500) each.
Anti-drug police official Tep Phiro said that Uy was the group’s ringleader and the owner of the drugs, while the other four defendants were middlemen.
“In mid-April 2014, our undercover agents contacted them and ordered one kilogram of ice from them for a fee of $50,000,” he said. “After that, we made an appointment and called them to come see and check the money in our undercover policeman’s car at a gas station in Phnom Penh.” The men were arrested at their home after making the sale, he added.
At their trial, the men denied ownership of the drugs, saying they were just middlemen.
All five declined to comment yesterday.