A British national had been arrested by Anti-Human Trafficking and Child Protection police in Siem Reap on charges of indecent assaulting under-age boys, police said yesterday.
William Reginald Blakeley, 70, was questioned, arrested and charged by police yesterday after five boys told police they had been victims of sexual abuse and police had received a letter of complaint from 11 boys.
“Police arrested him according to the complaint letter of 11 children who claimed that Blakeley used to hug and kiss them and touch their groin area,” Siem Reap deputy prosecutor Srear Ratanak told the Post yesterday, adding that all the boys were under 15.
Srear Ratnak said he would file the complaint with the Siem Reap Provincial Court today.
Khoem Vando, from Action Pour Les Enfants, said Blakely had been a person of interest to the child protection group since an incident in 2010 when he was allegedly sighted swimming and playing with a group of boys in Siem Reap in an intimate manner.
“It was very intimate contact that caught the attention of us and other civil society,” Khoem Vando said.
“He was hugging the boys and taking photos of them.”
Khoem Vando said that in March last year, three of the boys had testified to police about alleged sexual abuse by Blakeley but the case fell apart due to a lack of evidence.
“Blakeley frequently travels between his home in the UK and Cambodia,” Khoem Vando said.
“APLE had communicated with UK police to monitor him and he was actually arrested at a UK airport in 2010 when he travelled back home, but the police there did not have enough evidence against him so he was released on bail.”
APLE said it would begin providing legal representation as soon as possible for the victims and was offering the boys social support and emotional counselling.