The National Military Police has issued a statement for their officers to begin stopping vehicles that have illegal Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF) license plates starting on October 26.
The order, dated Friday and signed by deputy military police commander Vong Pisen, calls on fellow leaders to educate their ranks on the unlawful use of RCAF license plates, such as putting military plates on private vehicles, and to randomly inspect vehicles bearing the plates.
“Those not respecting the guideline will have their motorbikes and vehicles stopped and they will be arrested to take action following the discipline of military,” the statement said.
National Military Police spokesman Eng Hy said that the inspections would be carried out by working groups who will have members stand along the country’s roadways.
“We will confiscate [plates] from people using illegal number plates,” he said. “We will arrest and send them to court if they use military number plate to commit a crime.”
Mr. Hy said that in the past year, military police have seen an increase in people driving vehicles fitted with military license plates even if they were not in the military. He added that there have been complaints from traffic police regarding drivers with RCAF plates who do not respect traffic laws.
In August, a man driving a car with RCAF plates was arrested in Phnom Penh for drunkenly crashing into a motorbike and three food carts. A week prior, the driver of another SUV with RCAF plates killed a woman in Banteay Meanchey province.
In December, however, Defense Minister Tea Banh rejected a claim by opposition leader Sam Rainsy that the proliferation of RCAF license plates was causing chaos on the roads.
“I think they may have bad eyesight, or if they wear glasses, I don’t know what kind of glasses they are wearing that would make them see so many military plates,” General Banh said during a National Assembly session.