A 70-year-old Canadian national stabbed himself multiple times with a pocketknife on Sunday in a rented room in Siem Reap City as police arrived at his guesthouse to arrest him for alleged child sex offenses, police said Monday.
Police managed to break down the door and wrest the knife away from Pierre Deslauriers before taking him to the provincial hospital for medical treatment and arresting him on charges of sexually abusing five boys under 14, according to Mey Vuthy, the Siem Reap deputy anti-human trafficking police chief.
“The suspect, Pierre, knew that our human trafficking police were following him, and he hid inside his rental room with no clothes and attempted suicide,” said Major Vuthy.
He added that police had received complaints from the families of the victims and had spent two days following Deslauriers before moving in to arrest him. The boys claimed Deslauriers paid them $2 or $3 each to perform oral sex on him.
Major Vuthy said that Deslauriers had stabbed himself in the stomach and cut his hands and wrists, but that his wounds were not life-threatening.
In a press statement released Monday by Action Pour Les Enfants (APLE), the organization said that it had received a tip on February 20th from a partner organization in Siem Reap about a man suspected of abusing two young boys. The NGO, which investigates and presses for the prosecution of sex crimes against children in Cambodia, passed the tip to Siem Reap police and requested their intervention while continuing to watch Mr. Deslauriers.
APLE said its agents had seen the suspect take four boys into the forest, and that police later interviewed the boys, who said they had been abused.