Cambodia's former anti-drug czar gets life for trafficking drugs


Sara Sary, a handicapped heroin addict, receives help injecting on February 15, 2010 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.


Paula Bronstein

Moek Dara was supposed to lead Cambodia's war against illegal drugs.

Instead, he skimmed off the nation's stash of seized narotics, profited from their sales and took bribes from drug syndicates, according to a report in the Phnom Penh Post.

The case of Moek Dara, former secretary general of the National Anti-Drug Trafficking Department, is embarrassing for Cambodia.

But at least his arrest -- and the arrests last year of two generals alleged to have trafficked meth -- show some headway in fighting Cambodia's other great societal ill: corrupt and gredy officials.

His life sentence is a welcome victory for Cambodia's Anti-Corruption Unit, which revealed Dara's crimes.