BELGIAN police are investigating the possibility of prosecuting Phnom Penh-based
Belgian businessman Rudy Demasure for allegedly raping his 14-year-old Vietnamese
maid on February 7, according to documents obtained by the Post.
Charges against Demasure were dropped on June 22 in a case that Cambodian child protection
organizations describe as a model of impunity enjoyed by foreign child sex suspects
"Belgian national Rudy Demasure (who illegally uses the title of 'Dr' in his
Cambodian contacts) was recently arrested in Phnom Penh on charges of raping a minor
girl ... [his] dismissal is worrisome," reads a fax dated September 8 from Lieutenant
Colonel John Allaert of the Belgian Federal Police Liaison Office at the Royal Belgian
Embassy in Bangkok to Cambodia's Human Rights Action Committee (HRAC).
"I would very much like to receive as much information as possible ... in order
to establish whether there are sufficient grounds for a prosecution of Mr Demasure
in Belgium in the framework of our extraterritorial laws."
The interest of the Belgian authorities in De-masure's case has been welcomed by
HRAC representatives, who claim that the teenage victim and her family have been
subjected to continual threats and intimidation by individuals allegedly working
on Demasure's behalf.
In the most recent incident, two Phnom Penh Municipal Court officials and a policeman
are alleged to have visited the victim and her family in Prey Veng on August 25 and
forced them to thumbprint a document promising they would not seek to appeal against
"They told the family that they had already received $1300 [in compensation
from Demasure] and that they shouldn't complain ... that a person could be hired
to kill the family for only $1000," said a HRAC spokesperson, who spoke on condition
of anonymity due to fear of reprisals from Demasure.
Post attempts to contact Demasure's lawyer, Ang Udom, were unsuccessful.