Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Five years in jail for royal’s ‘abduction’

Five years in jail for royal’s ‘abduction’

Five years in jail for royal’s ‘abduction’

A 20-year-old was convicted yesterday for “abducting” his girlfriend, a 13-year-old princess from the Norodom branch of the royal family, to live with him in Thailand last year.

Ny Visal was sentenced to five years in prison and laid with a 5 million riel ($1,250) fine for taking the girl from her family home in Phnom Penh in May 2013.

Heng Sokna, the presiding judge at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court, said that Visal had been charged with “unlawful removal of a minor”, under the law on anti-human trafficking and sexual exploitation. He was given the maximum sentence.

The judge specified that he was also guilty of having sex with a minor though he only laid one charge.

Sok Savuth, an anti-trafficking police officer, said that Visal was arrested in Thailand on June 15 last year after the girl’s mother filed a complaint that her daughter had been there with him for more than two weeks.

“He abducted the victim, who is his underage girlfriend, from her family in Phnom Penh to live with him in Thailand,” he said.

Visal said yesterday that the young woman had chosen to live with him and that he had not abducted her.

“She was my girlfriend and she was not underage,” he said outside the courtroom.

“When we started loving each other, she told me that she was 16 years old. And we both had loved each other for over a year before we were separated by her family because they disliked me . . . I was poor.”

She had “loved me and she wished to live with me”, Visal continued, leading to her eventually running away from her family and meeting him at the border town of Poipet.

According to Proeun Srey Rath, Visal’s mother, the pair had met while Visal was studying cooking in Phnom Penh and lived near the royals’ house.

“They both had loved each other very much, but the girl’s parents disliked my son and my family because they were from the King’s family and were rich, but my family are farmers and we are poor,” she said.

In early 2014, Visal went to Thailand to work in construction, she added, with his would-be girlfriend attempting to commit suicide “several times” by taking medicine when he was away.

Neither the girl’s family nor her lawyer could be reached for comment yesterday.


  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all