Woman Detained in Bangkok Casino Rescued

A Cambodian woman who was allegedly detained and beaten by the manager of an illegal gambling establishment she worked for in Bangkok has been rescued and returned to Cambodia, according to local rights group Adhoc.

Officials at the Cambodian Embassy in Bangkok, with the help of Thai NGOs, located Phat Somesa, 32, from Banteay Meanchey province, on Tuesday afternoon and transported her back to Cambodia, said Soum Chankea, Adhoc provincial coordinator in Banteay Meanchey.

“At 4 p.m. Tuesday, the Cambodian Embassy and Thai NGOs found the location where the girl was being held and went to rescue her,” Mr. Chankea said.  The woman spent Tuesday night at the embassy in Bangkok before traveling to Siem Reap.

Phat Kimly, Ms. Somesa’s older sister, told Adhoc that her sibling was held against her will, beaten by the manager of the illegal casino, and forced to undress in public. The casino manager had accused Ms. Somesa of colluding with gamblers to cheat the casino of winnings, Adhoc said in a statement.

“The manager forced her to strip, leaving only her underwear, and made her stand in front of a crowd with another girl who they also accused of the same crime,” Mr. Chankea said, citing information provided by Ms. Kimly.

Photos of a semi-naked Ms. Somesa and an unidentified woman were uploaded to the Internet earlier this month.

On Monday, Ms. Somesa contacted her brother-in-law by phone after she had not been heard from since November 29.

According to Mr. Chankea, the second woman in the photos posted online is Laotian, but was not at the casino when Ms. Somesa was rescued.

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