A woman who stole a child from her parents was handed a two-year jail term yesterday, with one year of the sentence suspended.
Chhoun Lin was found guilty at Phnom Penh Municipal Court of taking a three-year old girl from her mother, Mean Sarann, who lives in Tuol Sangke commune, Russei Keo district, Phnom Penh, last year.
The 33-year-old was arrested last November in Banteay Meanchey province’s Malai district, near the border with Thailand, where she had been living with the child for about two months.
At an earlier hearing, Mean Sarann said that she had allowed her daughter to stay with her friend Chhoun Lin for one night in September, but her daughter was never returned.
During the sentencing at Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday, judge You Bunna said: “The court has found that Chhoun Lin was guilty of stealing a three-year-old girl from her family to live with her without permission from the victim’s parents.
“It is considered that the suspect’s activity is illegal and is against Cambodian laws, therefore the court decided to sentence her to two years in jail.”
The judge added that one year of the two-year sentence would be suspended.
Chhoun Lin declined to comment about her sentence yesterday.
However, during a trial last month she denied all charges and emphasised that she never intended to traffick or sell the girl.
“I decided to bring her to go with me in Banteay Meanchey province because I loved her very much.
“I also used to take care of her when she was born and I loved her like my daughter,” she said last month.
“I did not inform her parents because I thought that if I told them, they would not agree to it,” she added.