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Police tout success against economic crimes

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
Most of the illicit goods were sold in markets. Supplied

Economic crime police last year helped arrest nearly 70 people in more than 300 cases, mostly involving intellectual property violations, counterfeiting and chemical production.
The Interior Ministry police department cooperated with other state institutions in the clampdown, a report on the National Police website said.
Offences took place in Phnom Penh and in the provinces of Kampong Cham, Prey Veng, Kampong Speu, Kandal, Pursat, Kampong Chhnang, Siem Reap, Preah Vihear, Kampong Thom, Battambang, Kratie, Stung Treng, Ratanakkiri, Mondulkiri, Svay Rieng, Tboung Khmum, Preah Sihanouk, Koh Kong and Kep.
The report cited good cooperation with other institutions as the reason for the success.
The department cracked down on 317 cases in total and arrested 66 people, including 19 foreigners. Phann Sophal, vice director of the anti-economic crimes police, said yesterday the crackdown mostly related to violations of intellectual property law and distribution of counterfeit products at markets.
These included counterfeit coffee, out-of-date coffee in new packages, fake cosmetics, fake medicine, palm sugar mixed with chemicals and fake clothing brands.
Some offenders had been arrested and sent to court but he could not put a figure on the number sent to prison.
Chan Vanthoeun, director of the anti-economic crime department, said that while Cambodia is developing in all areas, economic crimes are still a challenge.
People are always seeking ways to act illegally without regard for others, he said.
They are not afraid of the law, and cause some other countries to think Cambodia is weak in implementing its international law obligations, Mr. Vanthoeun added.
The department set goals for this year to strengthen the effectiveness of suppressing economic crime.
These included training economic police officers in the law and foreign languages, and increasing cooperation with ministries and institutions to inspect factories that use chemicals that can pollute the environment and harm human health.
Goals also included increased prevention and suppression of natural resources crime, deforestation, and illegal exploitation of mineral resources and fisheries.

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