Swiss national Hugo Leuthold, 81, was sentenced to five years in prison on Friday by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court and will subsequently be deported after being convicted of soliciting sex from a 13-year-old boy.
Dun Vibol, lawyer for the octogenarian pedophile, said his client would appeal against the decision because the charges were too severe for a man of his age.
“[Leuthold] will go to the Appeal Court because he cannot accept the five years of imprisonment, a period which an elderly person cannot bear,” Vibol said, adding that Leuthold “did not commit pedophilia”.
This is the second time he has been convicted of crimes related to sexual abuse in Cambodia, according to Action Pour les Enfants (APLE).
He was arrested on Christmas Day, 2010 in Sihanoukville and later sentenced to 24 months in prison for sexually abusing four boys between the ages of 11 and 13, according to the child protection NGO. He was released after serving 10 months.
“This is a message for people who want to [commit pedophilia] in Cambodia,” APLE information officer Khoem Vando said.
Leuthold was arrested on March 11 while staying with the victim at a hotel in Phnom Penh, APLE said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Chhay Channyda at [email protected]