News Report Places Heng Pov in Malaysia

Cambodian police are participating in the hunt for fugitive former Phnom Penh police chief Heng Pov in Malaysia, according to a Thursday news report.

Agence France-Presse quoted Mohamad Johari Baharum, Malaysia’s deputy minister for internal security, as saying he had been informed that Cambodian police had arrived in the country.

“The Cambodian police are looking for him here,” he said, adding that it remained unclear what authorities would do with Heng Pov if he were caught.

“I am not very sure if he will be extradited,” Mohamad Johari Baharum said. “If we manage to track him down maybe we will surrender him to the Cambodian police who are here in Malaysia right now.”

Malaysian newspaper The New Straits Times cited an unnamed diplomat this week as saying that Heng Pov’s Malaysian visa would expire Oct 1.

Interior Ministry Penal Police Chief Mok Chito said Cambodian officers are cooperating with Malaysian police.

“Our officials went there to present documents and request cooperation from the [Criminal Investigation Department] and the Interpol police of Malaysia,” he said. “Our law enforcement officers are normally cooperating with Malaysia but are not hunting him there,” he said.

Cambodian informants in Malaysia have kept Cambodian authorities informed of Heng Pov’s movements, Mok Chito said.

“Heng Pov is moving around with his family members and foreign friends who do business with him in drugs,” Mok Chito alleged.

One police official said on condition of anonymity that two generals, one from the police and one from the military, flew to Malaysia on Sept 2 and then again shortly before Pchum Ben, but have since returned to Cambodia. The generals were looking for Heng Pov and requested his extradition, the official added.

David Chen, an Australian attorney for Heng Pov, and officials at the Malaysian Embassy in Phnom Penh did not respond to e-mailed requests for comment.

Heng Pov left Cambodia on July 23, a week before a warrant for his arrest was announced. He entered Malaysia on Sept 1 after his entry pass to Singapore expired.

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