Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Photos: South African drug mule arrested in Cambodia claims he was meant to hand over cocaine to Nigerian man

A South African has admitted to charges of trafficking more than half a kilogram of cocaine into Cambodia after arriving at the airport with a stomach full of drug capsules.

During a court hearing on Monday, April 10th, 30-year-old Jacobus Dawie Botha claims he was supposed to hand over the drugs to an unknown Nigerian man, at a guesthouse in Meanchey district’s Stung Meanchey commune.

Presiding Judge Kim Rathnarin said the defendant was arrested by the National Anti-Drugs Department (NADD) in collaboration with the Immigration police stationed at Phnom Penh International Airport on September 23, 2016 and charged with possessing, transporting and dealing drugs under the Drug Law.
The National Anti-Drugs Department (NADD) in collaboration with the Immigration police station at PPIA , arrested a South-African man suspected of swallowing drugs (hiding drugs in his stomach). The suspect travelled on a flight from Brazil via Dubai and Bangkok on Bangkok Airway's flight EY402​.

A (body) scan revealed that the carried packages, suspected of containing drug in his stomach. The suspect confessed that he swallowed around 100 packages containing cocaine.

Under questioning, Mr. Dawie Botha said he had been imprisoned for five years in South Africa for previous drug crimes, and that last year was his first attempt to bring drugs into Cambodia after having successfully trafficked them into his home country from Pakistan.
A woman he named only as “Yoko” managed the operation and organized for the cocaine to be transported from Brazil through Dubai before heading to Cambodia through Bangkok, he said.

Mr. Dawie Botha said he had been promised $7,000 if he was successful. Chhum Sopheap, deputy bureau chief of the Interior Ministry’s anti-drug department, said Mr. Dawie Botha had been found with a total of 587.10 grams of cocaine, which was worth about $90,000 on the market.
"Our country is not the place for distributing cocaine,” he said. “Our country is just for transit."

The verdict is expected to be announced on May 2.

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