Two Arrested for Attempting to Traffic a Woman to China

Anti-human trafficking police on Monday arrested two men at the Phnom Penh International Airport as they attempted to traffic a woman to China to marry a man there, police said Tuesday.

Chinese national Xu Xiandai, 30, and Cambodian Heng Seng, 53, were arrested at 7 a.m. as they tried to board a 22-year-old Cambodian woman on a flight to China, said Keo Thea, chief of the municipal anti-trafficking police.

“They were about to send a woman to sell in China,” he said, adding that the pair had been under investigation for about a month.

Mr. Thea said the men had already sent two women to China recently and that two other women were having their passports processed for the same trip.

“Heng Seng is the middleman who prepares the passports, visas and other things in Cambodia, and gets $7,000 from Xu Xiandai,” he said. “The Chinese man takes the women to his boss [in China] and he gets $9,000, while his boss sells the women to other people [for marriage] and gets more than $10,000.”

Mr. Thea said Mr. Xiandai masqueraded as a construction worker in Phnom Penh as he went about his trafficking business.

“He said he was a construction worker, but he was not,” he said. “He comes and goes and comes and goes between Cambodia and China.”

The two men are due in court Wednesday.

Two Cambodian women who were sent back from China on December 8 spoke of suffering through abusive marriages to Chinese men. About a week prior to their return, four other women were returned from China after taking refuge at the Cambodian Consulate in Guangzhou, China, where they fled after escaping similar situations.

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