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American charged with sexual assault of minors in Siem Reap

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An American national was put in pre-trial detention, charged with sexual assault of four girls aged under 15 years old. Police

American charged with sexual assault of minors in Siem Reap

An American national was put in pre-trial detention at the Siem Reap provincial prison on Wednesday charged with sexual assault of four girls aged under 15 years old, said court spokesperson Yin Srang.

Provincial authorities arrested the man on Monday after receiving a complaint accusing him of molesting two girls.

Srang told The Post on Wednesday that the suspect had been sent to the provincial court, where the prosecutor continued questioning on Wednesday morning.

“The court decided to charge and detain him [in prison]. He was charged with sexual assault of minors under the age of 15,” Srang said.

A post on the National Police website on Tuesday said the man was arrested after the Siem Reap provincial anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection bureau received a complaint from the parents of two of the girls.

The two victims are sisters aged 12 and 14 years old, the police website said, and the suspect was identified as 38-year-old Rugh James Cline.

According to the girls’ statements, the suspect took them from Pub Street to a place where he was staying, where the girls performed sex acts on Cline who gave them $120 for their services.

A report issued by the Siem Reap provincial anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection bureau said during questioning, Cline denied the girls’ accusations but claimed that he knew them and gave them some money.

Siem Reap provincial police chief Tit Narong was unavailable for comment on Wednesday.

Chea Heng, the head of the Siem Reap provincial anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection bureau, said the victims claimed that

the suspect had committed the same offence on a previous visit to Cambodia in 2018.

Despite a complaint being filed concerning only two girls, Heng said during further questioning the girls said Cline had abused two more girls.

“Four girls aged between 12 and 14 were abused by him. [If found guilty,] he could face from between one and three years imprisonment and a fine of between two and 10 million riel [$493 to $2,467],” Heng said.

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