Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Crimes against children down in 2017: CPU

Crimes against children down in 2017: CPU

Authorities and members of the CPU inspect the body of a slain toddler in Kampong Thom in June 2016. Crimes against children dropped in 2017, CPU figures show. Photo supplied
Authorities and members of the CPU inspect the body of a slain toddler in Kampong Thom in June 2016. Crimes against children dropped in 2017, CPU figures show. Photo supplied

Crimes against children down in 2017: CPU

Cambodia saw a 12 percent decrease in serious crimes against children in 2017, including a marked drop in the number of recorded rapes, according to figures from the Child Protection Unit.

The number of rapes against children dropped from 205 to 147 last year, though there was a slight uptick in the number of homicides, from 21 to 24.

There were 222 cases of major crimes investigated by the NGO across the country involving 232 victims aged 13 and under, as well as homicide victims aged 15 and younger, CPU director James McCabe said. In 2016, the CPU investigated 253 cases against victims 13 and under.

One concern from 2017’s cases was the “disproportionate” number of babies killed by their mother or father, he said, noting that such cases have been very rare in the past, but there were six last year.

“The death of any child is tragic, but when [the perpetrator is] a family member, it’s compounded,” he said.

“The arrest rate is running at 83 percent – that’s something to be applauded. Western countries would be envious of such an arrest rate,” he added.

McCabe put 2017’s successes down to the hard work of the National Police and the CPU’s policing partners, adding that there was an increased “willingness to report crimes against children, with the community knowing that if they report it to the police that something will be done about it”.

“It’s been made very clear civil settlements aren’t to be accepted,” he said, adding that informal financial compensation did not preclude prosecution.

Ros Chivy, deputy provincial police chief in Battambang, which again recorded the highest number of serious crimes committed against children, said raising awareness was key to preventing vulnerable children from being attacked. She added that parents migrating to work in Thailand could leave children open to abuse, which too often came from step-fathers, uncles or even grandfathers.

“We educate the public not to allow young girls to herd cows or leave them alone” – with an older man, even a relative, because that could – “allow the perpetrator to have opportunity to commit crimes easily,” she said.

McCabe also thanked the Kantha Bopha hospital staff for treating children who sustained serious injuries after they were attacked.

“Without the assistance of the hospital … a significant number of the most brutalised children wouldn’t have made it,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • NOCC to contest petanque, tennis axe

    The National Olympic Committee of Cambodia will lobby hard over the next few weeks for the inclusion of the Kingdom’s most productive medal-earning sport, petanque, along with vovinam and tennis after the disciplines were left out of the initial list of 30 preferred sports for