19 Victims in Nation’s Largest Pedophile Case

Police said Thursday that a total of 19 teenage girls have accused jailed Russian businessman Alex­an­­der Trofimov of sexually abusing them, making it the largest de­bauchery case in Cambodia’s history.

Trofimov, 41, executive director of Koh Puos (Cambodia) Invest­ment Group Ltd, was arrested in Sihanoukville and charged with de-bauchery by the Phnom Penh Mun­icipal Court on Oct 18.

“This is a big case,” Interior Mini­stry Anti-Trafficking Police Chief Bith Kimhong said.

“Before pedophiles committed debauchery on two or three boys and girls only,” he said.

Bith Kimhong said that a total of 19 teenage girls have come forward and that eight of the alleged victims are aged between 11 and 14, while the remaining 11 are aged 15 to 18.

The victims are now being cared for by anti-pedophile NGO Action Pour Les Enfants, which was heavily involved in the investigation, he said.

APLE Country Director Sam­leang Seila said the case against Trofimov is unprecedented in Cam­bodia. Samleang Seila also said that even the older teenagers have claimed that they were abused by Trofimov starting from when they were under the age of 15.

“In terms of the number of victims found, it is the largest [debau­chery] case ever in Cam­bodia,” he said, adding that his organization has been investigating Trofimov since 2005.

Trofimov’s company secured a 99-year lease to develop property on Koh Pos island off the coast of Sihanoukville in September 2006 in order to construct a $300-million resort.

On Oct 22, Youri Alexeenko, director of Koh Puos Investment, wrote by e-mail that his company was planning to comment on Tro­fimov’s arrest.

Alexeenko has neither com­ment­ed nor responded to e-mails since.

Officials at the Russian Embassy could not be reached for comment Thursday.



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