Police Ask Residents for Help With Drug Dens

Police in Phnom Penh on Fri­day called for more assistance from residents of the drug-riddled slum known as Trapaing Chhouk after another raid on the area on Thurs­day led to the arrest of 32 low-level dealers and users.

Dep­uty municipal police chief Born Sam Ath said more than 100 officers from city, district and commune forces swooped in on the notorious village in Sen Sok district on Thursday.

“For two hours, we raided Trapaing Chhuok, and we arrested 32 people, including one 15-year-old female,” Mr. Sam Ath said. “Some of them are dealers and some were using meth.”

Built over a fetid pool of wastewater, Trapaing Chhouk is a laby­rinth of shanties that drug users rent to get high on crystal meth­amphetamine.

Regular police raids—and hundreds of arrests—have so far failed to squelch a vi­brant trade in the drug.

“It has de­creased by 50 to 60 percent, but it will not stop completely because villagers think only of their business,” Mr. Sam Ath said, explaining that police relied on reports from locals to crack down on crime in the area.

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