Police arrest local man in connection with Cambodia’s fraud syndicate 

Supt Mustafa Kamal Gani Abdullah

KUCHING, Feb 23: The state Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) has arrested a 35-year-old local man in connection with the recent fraud syndicate that led to 47 Malaysians being detained in Cambodia.

State CCID chief Supt Mustafa Kamal Gani Abdullah confirmed the arrest, while adding that the man was apprehended around 3pm today.

“The police are still interrogating the suspect and investigating the case.

“However if investigation is still ongoing after 24 hours from the time of the arrest, the suspect will be brought to court at 9am tomorrow (Sunday) to apply for a remand order under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code,” Mustafa Kamal said in a statement.

He added that to date, 23 individuals — 18 men and five women — have lodged police reports relating to the case.

Last year, the victims that included 40 Sarawakians were enticed into working in the hotel industry in Cambodia with monthly salaries between US$1,200 and US$1,500, but they were required to deposit processing fees between US$200 and US$300 into a local bank account.

They flew separately to the Siem Reap International Airport, Cambodia, between October and November.

Mustafa Kamal was reported as saying last Wednesday (Feb 20) that the victims were taken to a house upon their arrival and not allowed to go out. Meals were provided but their handphones and passports were held by individuals who would monitor them.

He said that based on the victims’ statements, they were made to memorise scripts and impersonate bank officers, court officials and personnel from other departments for the purpose of deceiving victims.

The victims, detained at the Banteay Meanchey provincial prison since their arrests on Dec 11, returned home last Sunday (Feb 17).

Among them, 40 Sarawakians and three Sabahans, arrived on a chartered JC International Airlines flight from Siem Reap, which landed at Kuching International Airport around 2.15pm. — DayakDaily