A lawyer for six women accused of trafficking young women to China conceded his clients’ guilt during their trial at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Tuesday but asked for leniency because of their modest education.
“All of the accused are charged with selling, buying or exchanging a person for cross-border transfer,” Judge Svay Tonh said. The four women present in court—Hong Vy, 49; Pouy Samon, 44; Kirt Phuon, 52; and Ul Yorng, 40—were arrested in February.
They were charged the same month along with two other women—Pouy Savon, 33, and Yang Samean, 26—who remain at large.
According to Kim Chenda, who heads the city’s anti-human trafficking police, the six women would promise their victims employment in Singapore but traffic them to China to be married. Police have located a total of six victims in all.
At the trial, Ms. Vy claimed that the young women participated voluntarily and that she had received permission from their parents to send them to China.
The court is scheduled to issue a verdict on October 20.