Meth smuggler still at large after Svay Rieng bust

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A man attempted to traffic more than 16kg methamphetamine into Vietnam through the Bavet border checkpoint on Thursday. POLICE

Svay Rieng provincial anti-drugs police are working with their Vietnamese counterparts to find those behind the attempted trafficking of a large consignment of methamphetamine after a spooked smuggler dumped a suitcase containing more than 16kg of the drug near the Bavet border checkpoint.

The man managed to evade arrest after his attempt to cross into Vietnam through rice fields on Thursday night.

Svay Rieng provincial police anti-drugs bureau chief Kan Ken said on Sunday that the suitcase contained 17 packages weighing more than 16kg of a white powder. Tests revealed it to be methamphetamine.

Cambodian police are working with Vietnamese authorities to find the smuggler and others involved in the operation, he said.

The man was about to cross the border into Vietnam when he saw Cambodian authorities on patrol, Ken said.

Border Protection Brigade 611 of the Svay Rieng provincial police was patrolling the area between border posts 170 and 171, some 500m north of the Bavet border checkpoint when they encountered a man with a suitcase walking across rice fields towards Vietnam.

“It was raining heavily that night and the suspect dropped the suitcase and ran off into the forest. We searched but could not find him. We are working with Vietnamese authorities to track him down,” he said.

Seventeen packages of a white powder, which tests revealed to be more than 16kg of methamphetamine, were found in the suitcase, Ken said.