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Thai nationals deported over scams

Khy Sovuthy / Khmer Times Share:
Officers transport the Thais to be deported. CEN

Immigration police on Saturday deported 26 Thai nationals after they served their 10-month sentences for extortion and fraud over online scams.

Lieutenant General Uk Heisela, director of the investigation department at the General Immigration Department, yesterday said the Thai nationals were deported through Banteay Meanchey’s Poipet International Checkpoint on Saturday after serving their sentences.

“We deported 26 Thai nationals, including nine women, back to their country after they finished their jail term in Cambodia,” Lt Gen Heisela said.

“This is the first time that Thai nationals have committed this crime,” Lt Gen Heisela said. “They committed the crime together with Chinese nationals. They were arrested together with Chinese nationals.”

He noted that the GID is paying close attention to all foreigners who are committing crimes in Cambodia.

“On behalf of the Interior Ministry and the GID, we are appealing to Cambodians,” Lt Gen Heisela said. “If you see or meet many foreigners living in the same rented house and act suspiciously, please report it to the authorities.”

“Cambodia welcomes foreigners who do business legally,” he added. “But we will not tolerate crimes, even crimes that target people in other countries.”

Brigadier General Sim Sam Ath, chief of Poipet immigration police, yesterday said the deportees were escorted out of the Kingdom by Thai authorities.

“We handed them over to Thai authorities at our office at the border checkpoint,” Brig Gen Sam Ath said. “All of them were imprisoned for about ten months based on a court decision.”

Last month, Phnom Penh Municipal Court sentenced four Taiwanese and the 25 Thai nationals for operating VoIP scams from Cambodia in February.

Judge Kor Vandy reduced all of their sentences to ten months from two to three years, leaving the convicts with only about a month left in jail after accounting for time served.

During the trial in October, the four Taiwanese denied the accusation that they were running VoIP scams, claiming they were only computer technicians. They also said that they were paid $2,000 per month by two unknown Chinese men.

The 25 Thai nationals admitted to the offence, saying they were hired by four Taiwanese persons and were paid between $700 to $1,500 per month each.

One of the Thai nationals deported on Saturday committed a similar crime in Preah Sihanouk province and was deported along with the 25.

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