A man has been sent to the Battambang provincial police after being arrested for allegedly raping a minor in Thmor Koul district.
District police chief Heang Buntha said on June 7 that the suspect, a 20-year-old resident of Tros village in O’Taki commune, was arrested on June 6. The victim, 13, also resided in the village.
«The suspect said he had sex with her only once and that she had agreed to it because they love each other,» he said.
By law, this constituted statutory rape because minors cannot give legal consent to sexual activity, he said.
According to the victim’s mother, on June 5 her daughter came home after working as a labourer for several weeks. But at night she disappeared and could not be found in the morning. Then on June 6, her daughter returned home and said the suspect had asked her to sleep at his house in Tros village and had sex with her once.
Mao Mab, head of the women and children’s division at rights group Adhoc, said in the past Battambang, Kampot and Kampong Thom provinces had more rape cases than the other provinces and that the main factor leading to this crime was poor economic conditions for the families of the children who are victims.