One hundred Chinese nationals were yesterday arrested by the Immigration Police Department for gambling online and running extortion schemes using Voice over Internet Protocol technology in Phnom Penh following a tip from Interpol.
Lieutenant General Uk Heisela, chief of investigations at the department, said the 100 Chinese suspects included 19 women and were part of Chinese mafia operations within Cambodia.
The group extorted money from people in China via VoIP calls from Cambodia, he said.
Lt Gen Heisela said they were arrested based on a report from China’s Interpol police that was recently sent to the Ministry of Interior for intervention.
Lt Gen Heisela noted that according to the report, the suspects disguised themselves as Chinese police officials, judges, prosecutors or bankers as they telephoned to threaten and extort money from people in China.
“They were arrested after our police raided a rental villa in Tuol Kork district,” he said. “They were arrested in collaboration with Chinese police.”
Police seized VoIP telephones, mobile phones and other related materials from them after the arrests, he added.
Lt Gen Heisela said the group was now being detained for questioning at the Immigration Department, after which they would likely be deported back to China.
Lt Gen Heisela said Chinese Interpol police would take over the case once they came to Cambodia to transport the suspects back home.
From 2011 to 2017, 1,133 Chinese nationals, including 222 women, were deported to China for offences related to cybercrime.