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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Mother of rape victim sought in manhunt

Mother of rape victim sought in manhunt

THE mother of a pregnant 15-year-old girl believed to have been raped by her stepfather could face punishment as well after running off with the accused attacker, a police official said Monday amid a week-long manhunt.

The couple has been in hiding since last week, when the daughter told police she had been raped repeatedly by her stepfather.

The girl’s mother was uncooperative, said Mao Chamroeun, the provincial deputy police chief of the Anti-Human Trafficking Bureau.

“Until now, there has not been an official complaint from the victim’s family,” Mao Chamroeun said. “The mother ... even tried to run away with the suspect and her daughter.”

Police are waiting for an arrest warrant to be issued.

“The victim’s mother could be found guilty as well if she is found to have conspired with the man,” Mao Chamroeun said.

The girl told police that her stepfather began raping her in May. “He warned her that he would kill her if she dared tell anyone what happened,” Mao Chamroeun said.

The girl’s aunt brought her to a hospital for a medical checkup last week, where doctors confirmed the girl was six months pregnant. The girl is now in her aunt’s custody, police said. If convicted of assaulting a minor, the stepfather could face a sentence of between 15 and 20 years, Mao Chamroeun said.

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