Chinese carrying almost $1 million arrested at Phnom Penh airport

Khy Sovuthy / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Authorities detain the accused and display the cash seized from them. Fresh News

Three Chinese nationals were arrested on Tuesday for trying to bring in $900,000 in cash into the Kingdom without proper provenance for the money.

Related Post: Korean money mules nabbed at Siem Reap airport with $2.2 million

Sao Wathana, director of Phnom Penh International Airport, said customs officials cooperated with immigration police officials to arrest Huang Canming, 27, Yang Yongwei, 26, and Zizheng Zheng, 32, upon their arrival at the airport on Tuesday.

“We arrested three Chinese men and confiscated $900,000 around 5.20pm after they could not provide a clear source for the money,” Mr Wathana said.

Mr Canming and Mr Yongwei had flown in from Hong Kong on flight LQ971, while Mr Zheng had waited for their arrival at the airport in Phnom Penh.

Authorities became suspicious after the two Chinese men passed through security, where customs and immigration police officials found cash inside two suit cases that amounted to $900,000.

Mr Wathana said the two men did not declare the money or provide any proper provenance.

“We arrested them because they brought in the money and did not provide any clear source or intentions for it; so authorities at Phnom Penh International Airport decided to arrest them,” he said.

Mr Wathana said earlier this year, airport authorities cracked down on two similar cases, noting that authorities seized more than $3 million and $840,000 respectively in two separate prior cases.

“Now, our authorities will review and strengthen regulations on money trans- ported from foreign countries, especially for Chinese nationals who come to Cambodia,” he said. “Overall, we have worked hard to prevent and crack down on any crimes, including illegal transport of money and drug crimes.”

General Kirth Chantharith, general director of the Interior Ministry’s General Immigration Department, declined to comment, saying that he was in a meeting and referred any questions to his unit’s spokesman General Keo Vanthan.

Mr Vanthan could not be reached for comment. In a separate case over the weekend, two South Korean nationals were arrested in Siem Reap on July 7 for trying to bring in a total of $2.2 million in cash into the Kingdom without proper provenance for the money.

Immigration police arrested Yoon Wongi and Song Hyunhoo upon their arrival at Siem Reap International Airport’s Customs and Excise Department on Sunday, as they were carrying $2.2 million in bundles of $100 and $50 banknotes.

According to police report, the two South Korean men entered Cambodia on a flight from Hong Kong. They were subsequently taken to the Department of Investigation and Procedure, and the money was temporarily stored at the Customs and Excise Office at Siem Reap International Airport.

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