The Sihanoukville Municipal Court has charged three Cambodian women with allegedly procuring young virgin girls for suspected Russian pedophile Alexander Trofimov, officials said Monday.
Trofimov, 41, executive director of Koh Puos (Cambodia) Investment Group Ltd, was charged by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Oct 18 for abusing at least five girls between the ages of 13 and 14.
Tith Sreymom, 52, was arrested in Phnom Penh, while Nhanh Samuth, 30, and Cheng Sokyin, 50, were arrested in Sihanoukville, said Bith Kimhong, chief of the Interior Ministry’s anti-human trafficking department.
Bith Kimhong could not recall exactly when the women were arrested, but he said that the Sihanoukville court charged the three women last week.
“[The suspects] were living in the same villages as the girls that they lured to sell as virgins,” he said, adding that the women allegedly provided at least five virgin girls to Trofimov for prices ranging from $500 to $5,000. Bith Kimhong said that he expects more arrests will be made.
Trofimov was charged in Phnom Penh and not in Sihanoukville because of a confession made by a suspect who was arrested and charged in the capital Sept 3, Bith Kimhong said. The suspect, Phal Vannara, 34, was charged with conspiracy to commit debauchery for allegedly procuring in Phnom Penh a 14-year-old girl who was then brought by a foreign man to Trofimov’s residence in Sihanoukville, Bith Kimhong said.
Sihanoukville Court Director Svay Sisarouth said the three women were charged with conspiracy to commit debauchery, but she could not remember when they were charged. Svay Sisarouth added that Trofimov was charged in Phnom Penh because of the involvement of the anti-trafficking NGO International Justice Mission.
An official with IJM, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the organization was not responsible for where Trofimov was charged.
“IJM does not have any policing or charging authority in Cambodia,” the official said.
(Additional reporting by James Welsh)