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25 Nov 2022

Torn Vibol, Khmer Times

Cambodia: Govt. pledge to hunt down human trafficking syndicates as they appear to relocate to other areas across the country after crackdowns

"Finding new nests: S’ville crackdowns forcing human trafficking rings to relocate", 25 November 2022

Crackdowns on human trafficking involving job scams in Preah Sihanouk province are proving to be so successful that criminal syndicates are forced to move out and find new provinces to relocate.

Of late, Pursat province has come into the spotlight with Interior Minister Sar Kheng expressing his concern that it is becoming a new hotspot for such criminal activities…

The modus operandi of such crimes involve the scammers disguising themselves as private companies operating online services in investment zones.

They dupe their victims from outside of Cambodia through online advertisements promising lucrative jobs. When the victims arrive, they end up being forced to work in illegal operations such as online gambling.

, Cambodia was downgraded from Tier 2 to Tier 3 of the US Blacklist on Human Trafficking according to the 2022 Trafficking in Persons Report by the US Embassy in Cambodia, which also claimed that the Cambodian government does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so.

Because of this, the Ministry of Interior beefed up its effort on cracking down on human trafficking in Sihanoukville. According to the police, 84 people have been arrested for their involvement in human trafficking, including 62 Chinese, nine Vietnamese and 13 Cambodian…

Chou Bun Eng, vice-chairwoman of the National Committee for Counter Trafficking, said … that the scammers who managed to escape the arrest attempts are moving their operations to other part of the country…