PHNOM PENH: Twenty-five Japanese nationals suspected of involvement in a cyberscam operation based in Cambodia were deported to Japan on Wednesday (Nov 8), said General Khieu Sopheak, a spokesperson for Cambodia’s Interior Ministry.
The Japanese government arranged a charter flight to transport the suspects, who were detained in September after Cambodian police received a tip-off from their Japanese counterparts, he told The Associated Press.
The 25 were arrested in the capital, Phnom Penh, according to General Keo Vanthan, a spokesperson for the immigration police.
Khieu Sopheak thanked the Japanese government “for their support and good cooperation with the Cambodian government in order to arrest these people”.
Cybercrime scams have become a major issue in Asia.
In August, the UN’s human rights office said that criminal gangs have forced hundreds of thousands of people in Southeast Asia into participating in unlawful online scam operations, including false romantic ploys, bogus investment pitches and illegal gambling schemes.
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in a report cited “credible sources” saying that at least 120,000 people in Myanmar and roughly 100,000 in Cambodia “may be affected”. The report sheds new light on cybercrime scams that have become a major issue in Asia.
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