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3 charged with attempted sex trafficking

Two Cambodians and a Chinese man were charged by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday with attempting to traffic two Cambodian women to China, officials said.

The alleged brokers initially persuaded the women to go to China with the promise that they would marry Chinese men there, Pol Pithey, chief of the Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Police Department, told the Post.

As the women were preparing to depart with fake passports, however, the brokers told them they actually would work as massage girls or sex workers in China – a revelation that prompted the women to call their families for help, he said.

“The three suspects were arrested on Sunday based on the complaints of the victims’ parents,” he said, adding the three were sent to Prey Sar prison after being charged.

The brokers initially had approached the two women, aged 26 and 43, in the women’s home commune of Damrel in Kampong Cham, and had brought them to Phnom Penh when they were arrested, Pithey said.

Sok Roeun, vice-prosecutor at the court, yesterday confirmed that Chinese national Tao Hong You, 34, and Cambodian sister and brother, Nen Sreyly, 31, and Nen Sok Ny, 32, had been charged with the attempted trafficking.

He added that the three would be questioned further by an investigating judge, but declined to comment further.

The three suspects and their defence lawyers could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Following complaints about brokers luring hopeful brides into abuse abroad, the government briefly disallowed marriages with foreigners for six months in 2008.

National Police spokesman Kirt Chantharith said that since then, government services have facilitated legal marriages with foreigners and protected against abuse in most cases.

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