Children, aged 12 and 8, have been arrested in Cambodia for selling meth

A boy, 12, is photographed after he was arrested for allegedly selling drugs in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
PHOTO: The Phnom Penh Post/Asia News Network

PHNOM PENH - Two children have been sent to a government rehabilitation centre in Cambodia after they were arrested in the capital Phnom Penh for allegedly dealing drugs.

Commune Police Chief Khat Khontith confirmed that the children, aged 12 and 8, were apprehended with drugs that were tested and identified as methamphetamines.

"We arrested two children for delivering drugs," he said.

"We confiscated 59 packets of drugs and we sent them to the district police headquarters after we arrested them."

Tuol Kork Deputy District Police Chief Sok Heng said the children were kept at the station overnight and were sent to a "social affairs centre" the next day.

Meas Vyrith, of the National Authority for Combating Drugs, said it was clear the children had been used to traffic the drugs by adults in a bid to avoid jail time if caught.

The age of criminal responsibility is 14 under Cambodian law.

"The children just are tools for them and have been used to help to commit drug crimes," Vyrith said.

"Authorities must work hard to find the mastermind who uses children."