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French national in child abuse case

A LAWYER representing a French national accused of sexually abusing underage boys claimed his client was innocent yesterday, following a hearing at Preah Sihanouk court.

Bernard Roland Bouillier, 60, was arrested on March 5 and charged with committing immodest sexual acts with a child. Peng Manet, lawyer for Action Pour Les enfant, an anti-human trafficking and juvenile rights NGO, represents the three boys, who are between 10 and 14-years-old. She said that if Bouillier is found guilty he will be sentenced  to between one to three years in jail.

“We have requested the court to punish him [Bouillier] and deport him when his jail term is served,” Peng Manet said.

Defence lawyer for Bouillier, Tann Mengsroy, said however that the crimes in question were not committed by Bouillier, but by another foreigner.

“I have requested that the court acquit him,” said Tann Mengsroy.  “He is innocent and frequently cries because he has been in detention for four months without actually doing anything wrong.”.

A verdict is set to be announced next Monday.

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