168 Suspected Scammers Sent Back to China

A group of 168 Chinese nationals were deported early Tuesday morning following their arrest in Sihanoukville last month for allegedly defrauding citizens of their home country using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology, an official said.

Lieutenant General Khun Sambo, deputy director of the Interior Ministry’s immigration department, said the suspected scammers were sent back to China on two flights from Phnom Penh International Airport at 1 a.m. and 5 a.m.

Members of a group of about 250 Chinese nationals suspected of involvement in an Internet fraud ring walk off a plane in Shanghai on Tuesday after being deported from Indonesia and Cambodia. More than 160 of the suspects were sent back from Phnom Penh early Tuesday morning.

“We deported the 168 on two flights…and they were joined by more than 100 Chinese police,” Lt. Gen. Sambo said.

“The Chinese who were deported included some of the masterminds, but some masterminds are still at large, and we will arrest them and send them out of Cambodia.”

The 168 were apprehended during synchronized raids on two separate locations in Sihanoukville’s Bei commune on October 31, according to police.

The operation followed a two-month investigation and was carried out at the request of Chinese authorities, who claimed the scheme affected nearly 300 families.

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