14-Year-Old Confessed Rapist Released in Kompong Cham

Kompong Cham Provincial Court Prosecutor Hout Vuthy re­leased a 14-year-old boy arrested last month for the 2009 alleged rape of his two cousins, 8 and 9, in Dambe district’s Toek Chrouv commune, police officials said Tuesday.

Thol Meng, deputy provincial bureau chief for the anti-human trafficking police, said the prosecutor re­leased the suspect after being presented with the teenager’s birth certificate, and that the boy will be summoned again and ordered to pay an unnamed amount in compensation for his crime.

“Generally a minor cannot be charged with a criminal case under the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation, just forced to grant compensation [to the victim],” Mr Meng said.

“The suspect confessed that he raped the 9-year-old four times, and the 8-year-old he just [committed the] indecent act of touching her body,” deputy district police chief Hung Kim Hoeun.

Mr Kim Hoeun said the suspect admitted he perpetrated the crime against his cousins when their father, his uncle, was working in his rice field.

“We intervened and arrested the suspect after the victim’s father filed a complaint at our police offices saying what had been done to his daughters,” Mr Hoeun said. “We have also cooperated with NGOs to teach villagers about domestic violence and not to leave children at home alone.”

The father of the victims, 39-year-old Khen Chhun, said Tuesday that his daughters were attacked by the teenager after the youth tricked them into going home with him.

“I asked police officers to practice the law on the person who committed an illegal act and send a warning to any other people who intended to do other such crimes,” he said.

Neang Sovath, provincial coordinator for local rights group Adhoc, said he believed the prosecutor had examined the case before granting bail to the teenager.

“The authorities and police officers pay attention to try and disrupt multiple rape cases, especially now, when child rape is increasing this year,” Mr Sovath said.

 

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