Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - International school VP charged for alleged sex assault

International school VP charged for alleged sex assault

British national Mark Smith, 39, was arrested on Sunday over allegations that he molested a 5-year-old girl.
British national Mark Smith, 39, was arrested on Sunday over allegations that he molested a 5-year-old girl. Photo supplied

International school VP charged for alleged sex assault

A British national and deputy head of an international school in Phnom Penh has been charged with indecent assault following highly publicised claims he abused a 5-year-old student.

Mark Andrew Smith, 39, the vice principal of Golden Bridge International School of Phnom Penh, faces up to five years in prison and $2,500 in fines after charges were laid yesterday by Phnom Penh Municipal Court Prosecutor Seang Sok.

The charge comes after a week of reports about his arrest in the wake of accusations first made public on Facebook in unorthodox fashion by a self-styled media personality known as Viriya MC, who was not personally involved in the case.

But Pol Pithey, head of the Interior Ministry’s Anti-Human Trafficking Department, said that the police had investigated beyond Viriya’s remarks.

After questioning the suspect and the victim – with the assistance of experts trained in gathering child testimony – and obtaining a medical report, Pithey said police had enough evidence to pursue the case.

“The child victim clearly elaborated; the most important [point] is the victim stated that she was really sexually violated,” he said.

“Although the family did not file a complaint, it is a child rights violation and abuse,” he said, adding the family was worried about stigma.

He said authorities would be working with British police and investigating any other potential cases at the school.


  • Would you like fries with that? US burger chain makes Phnom Penh debut

    California-based The Habit Burger Grill restaurant chain is all set to serve up a delicious array of charbroiled burgers and sides at its newest international location in the centre of Phnom Penh. The Habit is “renowned for its award-winning Charburgers grilled over an open flame,

  • Banteay Meanchey flood victims receive aid

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday provided aid to more than 10,000 families affected by flooding in Banteay Meanchey province’s Mongkol Borei district and offered his condolences to the 18 victims who drowned in the province over the past week. He said flooding had occured in

  • Angkor provides ‘valuable’ water storage

    The Apsara National Authority (ANA) has stored millions of cubic metres of water at reservoirs in the Angkor area after Cambodia experienced a series of rainstorms over the last few days. The storing of the water, besides serving temple conservation, will also be used to

  • PM urges caution as Polish man tests positive for Covid

    The Ministry of Health on Wednesday reported that a 47-year-old Polish man tested positive for Covid-19 after arriving in Cambodia on Monday. There are a total of six Covid-19 patients currently in the country, all of whom are being treated at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital

  • Banteay Meanchey floods kill one more as death toll reaches 15

    As floodwaters start to recede in Pursat, Battambang and Pailin provinces and Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey continues to bear the brunt as one more person was killed on Monday, bringing the total number of flood-related deaths to 15 in the province this month. Banteay Meanchey provincial

  • Serving coffee with a side of robots

    The eye-catching glass building surrounded by greenery at the intersection of Streets 371 and 2002 in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district is more than just another coffee shop where you can while away a few hours. UrHobby House cafe is filled with robots and characters from