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Appeal Court slashes Japan sex traffickers’ prison terms

Appeal Court slashes Japan sex traffickers’ prison terms

The Appeal Court on Thursday reduced the sentences of a Japanese man and Cambodian woman by two years for trafficking six Cambodian women to Japan in 2016.

Judge Samrith Sophal told Susumu Fukui, 52, and Lim Leakhena, 29, that the court had taken into account the fact they had admitted the crimes.

“So the Appeal Court has decided to reduce the sentence for Susumu Fukui from seven years to five, and for Lim Leakhena from five years to three."

“If the convicted do not agree with the ruling and wish to appeal to the Supreme Court, [they] can do so within one month of the announcement of this verdict,” Judge Sophal told the court.

Leakhena had asked the court at the appeal hearing on February 13 to release her so she could take care of her disabled mother.

According to the court report, the six Cambodian women arrived in Japan in 2016 on the pretence of jobs as waitresses but were instead forced to be sex workers.

They managed to reach the Cambodian Embassy and were repatriated. Cambodian police then arrested Fukui and Leakhena.

Phnom Penh Municipal Court found them guilty on May 10, last year, and sentenced them to prison time. They were also ordered to pay $120,000 in compensation to the victims for “unlawful recruitment for exploitation”.

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