Tourist tried for alleged post office shipment of drugs

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
The accused is escorted away from court. KT/Buth Reaksmey Kongkea

Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday tried a Chinese national accused of shipping 16 kilograms of ecstasy substance and heroine from Germany via the post office in Phnom Penh last year.

Judge Pich Vicheathor identified the accused as 25-year-old tourist Liu Chunwa. Mr Liu was charged with drug transport and trafficking and could face a life sentence if convicted.

Judge Vicheathor said Mr Liu was arrested on July 12 by a joint force made up of Interior Ministry officers, the court prosecutor and the Daun Penh district post office.

Colonel Sath Suthy, deputy chief of the Interior Ministry’s internal security police department, yesterday in court said the Daun Penh post office received a suspicious package from Germany on July 10.

Mr Liu was listed as the owner of the shipment, and that the package also listed his contact details in Cambodia.

Col Suthy said upon closer inspection, the authorities found 16 kilograms of drugs inside the shipment, and reported the finding to the internal security department.

He noted that internal security police found 514.43 grams of ecstasy powder and 701.74 grams of heroin.

Col Suthy said a sting operation was prepared in order to nab the accused.

At about 3pm on July 12, the accused went to the post office to receive the shipment, but he showed up only to be immediately arrested.

“He was arrested with actual evidence after he came to collect the package of drugs from our police officers,” Col Suthy said. “After his arrest, he was sent to the internal security police department and questioned.”

Mr Liu told the court that the drugs did not belong to him. He said that it belonged to a Chinese national named Apo, who has been at large.

He said that on the day of his arrest, Mr Apo told him to pick up a shipment of coffee filters sent from Germany at the post office in Daun Pen district.

He said that instead of receiving the package, he was arrested by police.

“Police arrested me and alleged that I was the trafficker,” Mr Liu said. “After the arrest, they showed me the drugs that I was accused of shipping from Germany.”

“When I saw the drugs, I was surprised,” he added. “I did not know of it, nor was I involved.”

At the end of trial, Mr Liu requested the court to drop the charge and release him from him.

Real Sophin, deputy court prosecutor, yesterday said Mr Apo was made up.

“Although the accused has denied the allegation, he did not have proof to show that he was innocent,” Mr Sophin said. “Therefore, based on actual evidence, I decided to uphold his charge and ask the judges’ council to punish him.”

A verdict is due May 10.

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