Two Thai men were arrested by military police yesterday for allegedly smuggling US$430,000 in counterfeit bills into Banteay Meanchey province through Poipet International Checkpoint from Thailand’s Sa Kaeo province.
Three border police officials are also being questioned in connection with the case. Men Phearum, deputy commander of the provincial military police, said that police had arrested the two men as they attempted to smuggle the fake notes into Cambodia.
“I am not aware whether the men were attempting to deliver the counterfeit money in Cambodia or a third country,” he said, adding that the three officials were currently being questioned by police. Sek Samon, vice director of the Thai-Cambodia border police office, said that the officials were suspected of helping the two men to cross the border, but it was uncertain whether they were aware of the counterfeit money.
“The two Thai nationals have proper passports and one [piece of] luggage, and they asked the border police to find a taxi for them,” he said. “Therefore, we do not know whether our officers knew about the fake money inside the luggage or not.”
The border police officials had decided to assist the two men because they had official passports, but the men had not yet left Poipet when military police officers apprehended them, Sek Samon added.