Cambodia deports 74 Chinese arrested for telecom extortion scams

Chinese nationals (in orange vests) who were arrested over a suspected Internet scam, are escorted by Chinese police officers before they were deported at Phnom Penh International Airport, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, October 12, 2017. (REUTERS)
Updated 12 October 2017
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Cambodia deports 74 Chinese arrested for telecom extortion scams

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia: Cambodia on Thursday deported 74 Chinese nationals wanted in China on suspicion of extorting money from people there over the Internet and by telephone, Cambodian police said.
This raises the number of people from China and Taiwan who have been deported this year for suspected telecom scams to 346, Uk Heisela, the head of the Cambodian police told reporters at a press conference at the airport in the capital of Phnom Penh.
Several hundred suspected scammers have been arrested in Cambodia, which has emerged as a major center of rackets that have cost the victims billions of dollars.
A team of Chinese police arrived at the airport on a China Southern Airlines flight to pick up the suspects, who wore masks and had numbers marked on pink shirts.
Uk Heisela said the 74 suspects, including 14 women, had been detained on Oct. 5 in the seaside town of Sihanoukville. Two Indonesians were also deported back to their home country.
“They tricked victims in China, the civil servants there, such as teachers, medics and artists,” Uk Heisela said.
In some cases, they had obtained naked pictures of the victims and used them for blackmail, he said.
Cambodia is one of China’s closest allies in Southeast Asia. More than 400 Chinese and Taiwanese were arrested in Cambodia in August alone for suspected telecom scams.
The country’s good Internet connections and relaxed immigration laws have attracted con artists to carry out crimes.


At least 11 dead in Taliban attack on Afghan police HQ

Updated 58 min 41 sec ago
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At least 11 dead in Taliban attack on Afghan police HQ

  • The assault comes amid a series of peace talks between Washington and the Taliban that both sides say are making progress
  • 11 people had been killed, including nine civilians and two police officers

KANDAHAR: At least 11 people were killed and scores more wounded Thursday when the Taliban attacked a police headquarters in the southern city of Kandahar, officials and the insurgents said.
The assault comes amid a series of peace talks between Washington and the Taliban that both sides say are making progress, but which so far have yielded no reduction in violence in the gruelling Afghan conflict.
Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi said the afternoon attack in Afghanistan’s second-largest city started with a car bomb, then saw gunmen storm the police compound.
“A number of mujahideen equipped with heavy and small arms breached the headquarters and launched their operations inside,” he said.
Baheer Ahmadi, the Kandahar governor’s spokesman, said in a statement that 11 people had been killed, including nine civilians and two police officers, while another 80 — including women and children — were wounded.
He earlier had given a toll of 12 dead.
Interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said eight attackers were involved. Two blew themselves up, while the remaining six were “cornered in a building.”
Hayatullah Hayat, the provincial governor for Kandahar, said Afghan security forces had launched a “clean-up operation” to see if any attackers were remaining.
“The fighting is over now. Some vehicles were burnt. Now the Afghan army and US helicopters are hovering in the area,” police chief Tadin Khan told AFP.
Pictures on social media showed a huge plume of smoke rising over Kandahar, and Hayat said about six trucks carrying commercial goods had burnt.
The assault comes just one day after two Afghan soldiers — who were really Taliban operatives — fatally shot an Afghan colonel in Ghazni province.