Appeal Court Increases Compensation in Child Prostitution Case

Yesterday, the Appeal Court increased the amount of compensation to be paid by Japanese national Kato Atsushi to the girl whom he sexually abused as a child from 400.000 to five million riels ($1250 US), following an appeal lodged by her lawyers provided by the child protection NGO APLE.

Atsushi was convicted in 2010 for purchase of child prostitution from a minor. He was sentenced by the Phnom Penh Municipal Court to seven years in prison, followed by deportation from Cambodia, and ordered to pay 400.000 riels as compensation. APLE’s lawyers, who represent the victim since the beginning of the case, filed an appeal against the sentence requesting a higher amount for her.

The girl whom Atsushi victimized has been receiving social support from APLE and rehabilitation service from other organizations since her rescue. Although this is a very long and difficult way, she has taken great steps towards her rehabilitation, and the compensation can help her start a new life.

Seila Samleang, Country Director of APLE, stated:

β€œA higher amount of compensation is not only fair but also necessary when taken into consideration the long-term damages – psychological, emotional, physical and material – caused by the abuse and all the resources needed to deal with them.”

And he added:

β€œAPLE again calls for immediate payment by the offender. The victim has already waited for five years and deserves to move on with her life. After the deportation of Atsushi, it will be much more difficult for her to receive any money.”

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