Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Swiss hostel owner guilty in child sex case

Swiss hostel owner guilty in child sex case

Swiss hostel owner guilty in child sex case

Swiss national Erich Bader was convicted of child sex offences and sentenced to two years in prison by the Siem Reap provincial court yesterday.

Bader, who owns the Prince Mekong Villa guesthouse in Siem Reap, was found guilty of purchasing child prostitution from two minors, aged 11 and 16 at the time of the offences.

Presiding Judge Oeun Vanna told the court yesterday Bader had violated both the law and the moral standards of the community.

“After a long investigation and a five-hour trial we have decided to sentence him to two years in prison, backdated to his arrest in August [2010] and have ordered him to pay compensation of nine million riel to his victims,” he said.

“The court cannot believe his denial of the charges as he has no witnesses, and because his answers appear calculated to protect himself.”

The testimony of five of Bader’s former staff members, who defended his overall good character, was ruled inadmissible by Oeun Vanna on the grounds that they had too close a relationship with the accused.

Bader, who previously served a two-year prison term for child sex offences in Switzerland, moved to Siem Reap six years ago where he began operating a small guesthouse. Police prevented journalists from taking comments from Bader after yesterday’s trial.

During the trial Bader’s lawyer Li Veng Chheng argued that confusion during the initial police investigation about the dates of his offences had compromised the case. “The police arrested Bader without having any clear proof or witnesses especially about dates he is alleged to have performed the offences,” he said last month.

But Oeun Vanna rejected the argument, downplaying the mistakes as minor clerical errors that did not affect the overall conduct of the police investigation.

MOST VIEWED

  • PP massage parlours raided, 29 suspects held for prostitution

    The Phnom Penh municipal Military Police on Sunday raided four massage parlours in Por Sen Chey district and detained 29 suspects for questioning over their alleged involvement in prostitution. Deputy municipal Military Police commander Pu Davy on Monday said the four massage parlours were located near

  • PM: All 10 Asean countries to receive Rainsy arrest warrants

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said on Thursday that all 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) member states will receive warrants for the arrest of Sam Rainsy. The warrants have already been sent to Laos and Thailand. He was speaking at a joint press conference at

  • Overtourism still threatens Angkor Wat

    Ticket sales to the Angkor temples are down. An Angkor Enterprise report has revealed that ticket sales to the Angkor Archaeological Park dropped by more than 11 per cent from the same period last year. Prime Minister Hun Sen isn’t concerned. He told journalists that

  • Human rights report biased, says Cambodia

    Cambodia has accused the 42nd session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland on Wednesday of having “undermined the principle of objectivity”. In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Cambodia to the UN said the Office of the