Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Court expels Italian sex criminal

Court expels Italian sex criminal

Court expels Italian sex criminal

THE Court of Appeal on Tuesday ordered an Italian national convicted of performing indecent acts against six minors to leave the country after suspending a two-year jail term handed down in 2008, a decision that outraged the victims’ lawyer.

Fabio Cencini, 45, was arrested in February 2008 in Sihanoukville and charged with sexually abusing four girls and two boys aged between 8 and 13 years. He was found guilty and originally sentenced to two years in prison, with three months to be served immediately and the remainder to be served pending his appeal.

However, presiding judge Seng Sivutha ruled Tuesday that the remaining 21 months would remain suspended, with Cencini free to go after serving three months in prison from February to May 2008.

“It is a misdemeanour crime, and in the two years since he has been out on bail he has not committed another crime,” he ruled.

The court also ruled that Cencini had to pay a 2 million-riel (US$477) fine and 2 million riels to each victim, and ordered him to leave Cambodia.

Noun Panith, the victims’ lawyer provided by child protection NGO Action Pour Les Enfants, said he would continue to plead with prosecutors to ensure that Cencini serves more jail time.

“We are terribly sorry for the Appeals Court’s decision, which was contrary to the original ruling,” he said. “It was very strange for the Appeal Court to not uphold the entire lower court conviction but suspend the rest of his sentence.”

Cencini, speaking to the court, said he would go home after being set free. “I would like to request court officials to let me go home and visit my elderly parents in my country by providing me my confiscated passport.”

Tith Savuthy, Cencini’s lawyer, said the decision to suspend the rest of the sentence was “acceptable” and helped clarify the original sentence handed down in provincial court.


  • Negotiations on EBA being held

    In an effort to defuse tensions, a senior government official said Cambodia is negotiating with the European Union (EU) on the Everything But Arms (EBA) trade deal, which allows the Kingdom to export goods to the 28-member bloc tariff-free. The EU notified Cambodia on October 5

  • Ministers to tackle sea pollutants

    Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities and members of local communities have collected 77 tonnes of water hyacinth at a Sihanoukville beach, Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesperson Or Saroeun said. He told The Post yesterday that the aquatic weeds had been floating along some of the province’s

  • Chinese police escort deported scam suspects

    Ninety-one Chinese nationals accused of extorting money from victims in a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) scam were deported from Phnom Penh International Airport on Monday under the escort of 182 Chinese police personnel. General Department of Immigration head of investigations Ouk Hay Seila told reporters

  • Sam Rainsy, government group set to clash at IPU Geneva meet?

    Opposition figure Sam Rainsy has been invited to speak at the General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) in Geneva, according to a former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) lawmaker. A government delegation is also set to attend the meeting, a National Assembly press release