Police Seize Smut; Child Porn Raids Yet To Come

One woman and three men may face fines after Thursday raids in Phnom Penh’s Daun Penh and Prampi Makara districts turned up hundreds of pornographic VCDs and video clips, officials said Monday.

Phnom Penh Municipal Court Deputy Prosecutor Sok Kalyan said that municipal anti-human trafficking police detained Long Vy, a female VCD vendor who owns a shop near Phsar Thmei, where police found 780 pornographic VCDs.

The three men were arrested for selling pornographic video files from three computers at stalls opposite Baktouk High School in Prampi Makara district, he said.

The four were detained for a period of 48 hours before being released Saturday, pending municipal court hearings.

Sok Kalyan said he was not sure if child pornography, which was freely available from several Phsar Thmei vendors last week, was among the material confiscated.

There is no law in Cambodia prohibiting pornography, though a 2000 subdecree calls for fines of $50 to $500 for those who distribute it, Sok Kalyan said.

There is also no law specific to child pornography.

Marc Vergara, UN Children’s Fund spokesman in Cambodia, said that the raids were a step toward combating child pornography, though he stressed that Unicef’s concern is the sexual exploitation of children, rather than pornography in general.

“Our concern is the use of children [in pornography],” he said.

Map Sarin, Phnom Penh deputy governor and head of a committee set up to fight pornography, said that he has advised the municipal culture department to take action against the sale of all pornography.

Similar raids will be mounted to curb child pornography, said Phan Pheng, Daun Penh district police chief whose officers participated in Thursday’s raid.

“No one could raid all [of the shops] at once,” he said.

 

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