Interior Ministry police arrested a Danish woman Wednesday evening in Phnom Penh on suspicion of attempting to mail more than 10,000 painkiller tablets to the US and Canada, an official said Thursday.
The woman, identified by police as Axelxen Johanne Vinther, 45, was arrested while allegedly trying to send 10,761 pills containing codeine by post at the central post office near Wat Phnom, said Chay Sinarith, director of the Interior Ministry’s Internal Security Department.
Police questioned Vinther for four hours outside the post office and at the Interior Ministry, Chay Sinarith said.
Vinther was sent to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday. Though codeine pills are freely available in pharmacies in Cambodia, Chay Sinarith said the woman was arrested on suspiction of drug trafficking.
Municipal court Chief Prosecutor Ouk Savuth confirmed that Vinther was sent to the court Thursday, but he declined to comment further on the case or the charges against the woman.
While codeine is legal to buy and sell in Cambodia, the drug is still considered a controlled substance by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, said Margarethe Ehrenfeldner, chief of the psychotropics control section of the UNODC, at the close of a four-day anti-drug conference in Phnom Penh on Thursday.
Lour Ramin, secretary-general of the National Authority for Combating Drugs, said the case wasn’t the first involving foreigners who have been caught trying to send drugs abroad in the post.
“They sometimes package the drugs and then put them in electrical devices or boxes,” he said.
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