A 51-year-old Turkish man was arrested on Wednesday by anti-human trafficking police in Phnom Penh for allegedly buying the virginity of two 14-year-old girls, police said.
The mother of one of the victims was also arrested for having sold her daughter to the Turk, while a second Cambodian woman was arrested for her role in brokering the deal, according to Keo Thea, Phnom Penh anti-human trafficking police chief.
Mr. Thea said that Aydin Goktepe was arrested at around 6:50 p.m. near his guesthouse in Wat Phnom commune, Daun Penh district.
“We had been following him for about half a month because he had found a young virgin girl to have sex with him in Phnom Penh,” Mr. Thea said. “He came [here] to find young virgin girls to have sex with him by asking motorbike drivers and tuk-tuk drivers.”
He said Mr. Goktepe, a mechanic, had been in Phnom Penh for around a month staying at the Malis guesthouse near Wat Phnom, but that police had heard he was planning to leave the country for Thailand this week.
Doeun Srey Net, 22, allegedly arranged for the mother of one of the 14-year-old girls to sell her daughter to Mr. Goktepe for $700, Mr. Thea said. However, after the girl was sold, the Turkish man reneged on the deal and gave them only $400.
Mr. Goktepe also purchased the virginity of another 14-year-old girl, but police are still investigating the circumstances under which the encounter took place, he said.
The three suspects are now in the custody of anti-human trafficking police while Mr. Thea prepares to forward their case to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court. The two victims are being cared for by World Hope, an anti-trafficking NGO.
Anti-pedophile NGO Action Pour Les Enfants (APLE) said in a statement Thursday it had cooperated in the investigation against Mr. Goktepe after receiving a tip from an informant who was asked to bring young girls to have sex with the Turk.
“The Turkish man, if found guilty, should be deported from Cambodia after his imprisonment in order to ensure that he cannot harm any more Cambodian children,” Yi Moden, APLE deputy director of field operations, said in the statement.
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