The number of drug-related crimes in the Kingdom rose by 19 percent from the previous year and more than 20,000 suspects were arrested, according to the Interior Ministry’s anti-drug trafficking department.
The report issued yesterday said there were 9,572 cases last year compared with 8,018 recorded in 2018.
It noted that 20,113 suspects were arrested last year, up 24 percent from the 16,232 nabbed in 2017.
The report said last year’s arrests included 10,950 people suspected of trafficking drugs and 9,163 over drug use.
It noted that 401 foreigners of 12 nationalities were among those arrested last year.
“A total of 720 kilogrammes of illicit drugs and 99.97 kilogrammes of dried marijuana as well as 94,441 marijuana plants were confiscated during raids last year,” the report said.
In 2018, a total of 533 kilogrammes were seized.
General Mok Chito, deputy National Police chief, yesterday said the increase in seizures was due to a bigger flow of illicit drugs into the country through its northeast borders, via the post office and through the airports.
“Since 2017, the government has carried out anti-drug campaigns and cracked down on many drug-related crimes,” he said. “However, drug traffickers keep importing drugs across the border to reach their secondary destinations. This is still a problem.”
Lieutenant General Neak Yuthea, NACD deputy secretary-general, yesterday said that ever since the ministry set to eliminate drug distribution in night clubs and KTVs, no large amounts of drugs were seized from such outlets.
“We cracked down on six nightclubs and KTVs across the country in 2019,” he noted. “We will investigate and conduct crackdowns on other nightclubs and continue our efforts to eliminate drug use and trafficking here.”
Last November, Interior Minister Sar Kheng noted that Cambodia’s anti-drug trafficking campaign is succeeding and that police plan to focus more on small-scale drug dealers.
Yong Kim Eng, president of the People Centre for Development and Peace, yesterday said: “It’s rare for police officers to arrest the ringleaders in large drug cases. This is what people are still concerned about the most,” he noted.
- Tags: drugs