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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Minority girl kidnapped in elaborate ruse

Minority girl kidnapped in elaborate ruse

Teen held hostage 2 months on farm, rights group says

Rights workers said Sunday they are investigating allegations that a Ratanakkiri farmer snatched an ethnic minority girl and held her captive on his farm for two months until she escaped with the help of her kidnapper's wife and called  her parents from hospital last Thursday.

Pen Bonna, Adhoc's provincial coordinator for Ratanakkiri, told the Post Sunday that he will file a complaint on behalf of the parents of the girl, 17-year-old Klan Chheou, against the farm's manager, accusing him of illegal confinement and attempted rape.

"The girl was confined on this farmland [some 60km from her family home] because [the man], who manages the land for a local policeman, pretended to be a moto taxi driver," Pen Bonna said.

"When the girl asked him to take her to her uncle's farm, he took her to his farm instead. He wanted her to pay him 50,000 riels for the ride but she didn't have that much money and was forced to work on his land for two months."

Klan Chheou said that the farmer took her to his farmland against her will and then promised to pay her 150,000 riels per month to work for him.

He "threatened to tell the neighbors that I was his second wife and so I did what he told me and didn't try to call my parents," Klan Chheou said.

"Luckily, I wasn't hurt or damaged. I protected myself from rape or him touching me," she added.

Missing person

Pen Bonna said that the girl's parents came to ask him for help after their daughter went missing on June 9 . He said he filed a complaint with the authorities requesting help.

I WASN’T HURT OR DAMAGED. I PROTECTED MYSELF FROM RAPE OR HIM TOUCHING ME.

"I learned on Thursday that the girl's parents found her at [the man's] farmland and now I will be filing another complaint against him on their behalf directly to the prosecutor on Monday," Pen Bonna said.
The girl was found after the farmer's wife took her to a local hospital and advised her to call her parents last week.

The wife "brought me to the hospital because I was feeling very unwell and she told me to call my parents", Klan Chheou said.

Sol Njong, Chheou's father, told the Post that he was very worried when his daughter went missing and that her captor has contacted him. "He wanted to give us 320,000 riels for the two months that my daughter worked on his land and asked me not to file a complaint against him but I rejected the money and I will file a complaint to seek justice for my daughter."

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