Siem Reap Provincial Court sentenced a 14-year-old boy to seven- and-a-half years in prison after he confessed to raping a 12-year-old girl in August.
Judge Pol Sam Oeun said yesterday that he handed down the sentence on Monday for the rape committed on Aug 19 in Siem Reap City’s Slakram commune.
Deputy commune police chief So Sin Dara said the teenager confessed to raping the girl twice at her home.
“He rode his bicycle to see if the girl was staying alone,” he said.
Seila Samnang, country director for the anti-pedophile NGO Action Pour les Enfants, said Cambodian law allows those age 14 and older to serve jail time if they are convicted of a crime. However, he said, the law states judges may reduce the sentence if the offender is a juvenile.
In Battambang province, the provincial court granted bail to a 24-year-old man suspected of raping a 12-year-old girl due to an apparent lack of evidence. Provincial anti-human trafficking police chief Koy Heang said Khem Seiha was released because the court prosecutor did not believe there was enough evidence to hold him in jail. Mr Heang said he would gather more evidence and present it to the court.
Thma Koul district police chief Nhim Vicheat said Mr Seiha was allegedly caught in the act by the older sister of the victim, who contacted the police.
(Additional reporting by Frank Radosevich)