Second US Citizen Accused of Debauchery

A US citizen was arrested for allegedly having sex with a minor as another US citizen, 61-year-old Richard Arthur Schmidt, prepared to return to court today after his second arrest in less than a week.

Police in Battambang town ar­rested Blake Alan Respiny, 47, from the US state of California, on Monday night.

Acting on a tip from the NGO Action Pour Les Enfants, police raided his guest house room and found the man with two naked 14-year-old boys, said Seng Son, bureau chief of anti-human trafficking in Battambang province.

Several bottles of lubricant were found in the room and will be submitted as evidence, he said.

Hok Lundy, director general of the National Police, ordered Tuesday that Respiny be transferred to the Interior Ministry’s Foreign Police Department in Phnom Penh, Seng Son said.

Respiny entered the country through Poipet on Dec 13, Seng Son said. He said police suspect he had sex with at least five boys—three aged 14, a 15-year-old and a 16-year-old.

The arrest came as the Municipal Court is considering a second de­bauchery charge against Schmidt. Schmidt was arrested Dec 22 on suspicion of molesting young boys after police found porn­ographic photos in his Phnom Penh apartment. After a court hearing Thursday, Judge Tan Senarong charged Schmidt but said there was insufficient evidence to keep him detained until trial.

Police rearrested Schmidt on Saturday after he was caught at a Phnom Penh guest house with a 13-year-old boy, said Pol Phie­they, chief of Municipal Foreign Police.

Pol Phiethey alleged Tuesday that Schmidt lured the boy into his room by promising to teach him English, then raped him.

“This time I hope the court will detain him. He should not be released again,” Pol Phiethey said.

Both men could face deportation to the US for their trials. A US Customs Service officer ar­rived in the country last week to monitor Schmidt’s case.


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