Phnom Penh, Cambodia – A rapid response from the Chbar Ampov district police and AHTJP police resulted in the arrest of a 56-year-old German national on Tuesday. After an initial complaint filed by the mother of a victim aged 9, police investigation, with the assistance of child protection organization APLE Cambodia, revealed five more victims.
According to his LinkedIn, the suspect entered the Cartoon Film Production industry in 1996. He received his first Investment license for this sector in Vietnam, where he produced movies and TV Series for Hahn Film/Achterbahn AG, A – Film (Per Holst). In 2013, he decided to move to Cambodia and started his Dubbing and Audio Production.
Possessing skills and experience in Cartoon Production, the suspect continued his dubbing business and employed male children for this work. He abused some of these children sexually. Additionally, he groomed his victims and their families with monetary support.
When one of the victims changed his behavior, his mother, who worked for the suspect as a cook, talked to her son who then disclosed the abuse.
Huon Tim, Investigation Manager at APLE, said about the operation:
“We applauded the police for its effective response. After the complaint by the mother of one of the victims, police immediately started an investigation and conducted the necessary interviews. As a result of this quick response, the German man was arrested one day after the initial complaint was filed. I call to the general public, especially those who have underage children, to pay more attention to the behavioral changes of the children.”
One of the difficulties in cases that involve grooming of victims and their families is that the families are often supportive to the suspect even after the abuse has been revealed. In this case, however, the parents of the victims have strongly supported their sons throughout the police proceedings.
Police is continuing its investigation and will also conduct a search in the suspect’s house. It is believed that this may result in more victims being identified. APLE has been providing immediate social support to the victims and families.
In Sihanoukville, a 59-year-old Mexican was charged by the Preah Sihanouk Provincial Court. The Deputy Prosecutor, Ros Saram, charged the Mexican with Purchase of Child Prostitution and Indecent Assault with aggravating circumstances (status of the victim). The crimes were committed against two underage girls, aged 13 and 16.
Child protection NGO APLE provided a tip-off to police about suspicions of sexual abuse. Police then swiftly conducted an investigation into suspicion and rescued the victims. The Provincial Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Unit led by the Deputy Provincial Police Commissioner in charge invited P.P.B for questioning after the mother of the 13-year-old girl filed a complaint.
The suspect is in pre-trial detention at Preah Sihanouk provincial prison awaiting further court procedures. Furthermore, APLE and its partners are ensuring that all victims receive appropriate support.