Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Institution-based sex crimes raise concerns

Institution-based sex crimes raise concerns

George Moussallie (top) arrives at Phnom Penh Municipal Court last year after an APLE investigation led to his arrest.
George Moussallie (top) arrives at Phnom Penh Municipal Court last year after an APLE investigation led to his arrest. Pha Lina

Institution-based sex crimes raise concerns

Institution-based sex crimes against children and the threat of online pedophiles are a “growing concern” in Cambodia, child protection organisation APLE said in its annual report yesterday.

“Over the past few years, we have observed more institution-based abuse in orphanages and schools,” said Seila Samleang, the executive director of APLE Cambodia.

Religious institutions have also been implicated after several high-profile exposures of alleged sex crimes by Buddhist monks, according to the National Police’s Child Protection Unit (CPU).

Threats are also emerging in the online world, with offenders grooming children before visiting Cambodia, APLE says.

James McCabe, the head of CPU, said that online pedophile networks are hard to infiltrate because new members are often required to post child porn to get in.

However, both McCabe and APLE said authorities had improved in gathering and preserving evidence, which helps to build stronger cases that rely less on victim testimony.

APLE’s report said that it rescued 62 victims, provided legal support to 211 and social support and rehabilitation to 406 in 2015. In 2014, the organisation rescued 58 victims, supported 489 victims legally and 464 victims socially.

For both years, the number of convicted suspects in APLE-handled cases was 27.

McCabe said that in 2015, CPU saw 295 child sexual abuse cases across 21 provinces.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince injured, wife dies after accident

    THE wife of former First Prime Minister Prince Norodom Ranariddh, Ouk Phalla, 39, died while the prince was “severely” injured following a road accident in Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nub district on Sunday morning, officials said. Rananriddh, who is also the president of the Funcinpec

  • Guards protest dismissals, reject claims of sharing naked photos of child

    Some 20 former security guards at the US Embassy in Phnom Penh protested on Tuesday against their dismissal. They accused their employers of falsely claiming they had viewed and shared child pornography from their mobile phones as grounds for their termination. In total, 32 personnel were dismissed

  • We’re going to Wisney World!

    More than 6,000 mostly Chinese attendees witnessed the inauguration ceremony of a $1 billion Sihanoukville resort project called Wisney World in the capital on Wednesday. The event on Koh Pich, attended by several senior Cambodian government officials, is a joint venture between China’s AMC International and

  • Funcinpec urges probe into deadly Preah Sihanouk accident

    THE Funcinpec party has urged the government, especially the Ministry of Interior, to investigate the traffic accident in Preah Sihanouk province which left Prince Norodom Ranariddh badly injured and his wife Ouk Phalla dead. Funcinpec Vice President You Hokry told reporters at Botum Votey pagoda,