Teenager Released After Raping 10-Year-Old

A 13-year-old boy was released due to his young age Monday after he was arrested on Saturday for raping a 10-year-old girl on a boat in Kandal province’s Laeuk Dek district, officials said.

Sim Sarin, deputy district police chief, said the teenager lured the girl, who was his neighbor, to a lake and onto a boat where he attacked her on Friday after spending the day drinking alcohol and watching pornography with his friends.

“At about 3 p.m., the boy was riding his bicycle along the road beside the Mekong River and he saw the girl with her 9-year-old brother picking guava,” Mr. Sarin said.

“The suspect lied to the girl and said her mother had just come back from Phnom Penh and had bought a new bicycle and he volunteered to carry the girl back home,” he added.

After riding with the girl for about a kilometer in Peam Raing commune, the boy parked the bicycle and forced her onto a boat, Mr. Sarin said, adding that the boy then rowed to the middle of a lake and raped the girl.

“He also threatened to kill the girl if she told her family,” he said.

“While the boy was raping the girl, she yelled for help and a fisherman came to intervene and rescued the girl,” he said, adding that the boy rowed away and escaped.

After hiding for one night at a relative’s house in neighboring Prek Dach commune, the suspect was brought to the district police station by his parents and confessed to the crime, which had been reported by the victim’s parents.

After being taken to the provincial court for questioning, the boy was released, said Chao Vuthy, deputy chief of the provincial police’s serious crimes bureau.

“The judge decided to release him back home this evening because he is an underage boy, I do not know anything more,” Mr. Vuthy said.

Court officials could not be reached Monday. According to the criminal code, courts may only impose a criminal penalty on a minor aged 14 or older.

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