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Man charged with trafficking

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea / Khmer Times Share:

A 43-year-old man was charged by Banteay Meanchey Provincial Court yesterday for his involvement in trafficking more than 20 Cambodians to work illegally in Thailand last year.

Phon Savuth, a police officer with the provincial anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection department, said Eath Oun, an employee of a travel agency in Poipet city, was charged with unlawful removal for cross-border transfer.

He added Mr Oun was arrested on Monday in Poipet city after he was sued by 22 Cambodian labourers who had been trafficked by him in 2017.

“He was arrested by our police in accordance with the warrant for his arrest from Banteay Meanchey Provincial Court,” he said. “He was charged with unlawful removal for cross-border transfer and faces at least seven years in prison if convicted.”

Mr Savuth said that according to a police report, in 2017 the suspect brought 22 Cambodian labourers across illegal border checkpoints along the Cambodia-Thai border in Banteay Meanchey province.

They each paid him from $300 to $500 as a fee for his services and were promised jobs as construction workers in Thailand, he added. However, the victims were abandoned once they arrived and some were arrested by Thai immigration police for illegally staying in the country, according to Mr Savuth.

He said the victims demanded their money back after being repatriated, but the suspect did not have any money to refund them. He later fled from his home and the victims filed a lawsuit against him.

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