Phnom Penh: On Monday May 25 of 2020, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court found two Cambodian women guilty of Procurement of Child Prostitution. One of them is the 37-year-old mother of the 14- year-old girl victim, who was sentenced to 5-year imprisonment for “Aggravated Procurement of Prostitution” as stipulated under Articles 25 and 27 of the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation. Another woman, 49, who procured the victims for sexual exploitation in favor of financial remuneration, was sentenced to 8-year imprisonment for “Procurement with Regard to Child Prostitution” as stipulated under the Articles 25 and 28 of the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation. Both women were ordered to pay a compensation of 20,000,000 million Riel (approximately $5, 000) to the child victim.
In January 2020, the Phnom Penh Anti-Human Trafficking Police commenced the investigation following tip-off by APLE Cambodia which received the concern of child sex trafficking from a community member. The community reported the concern to APLE, following the suspicion of the trafficker and the mother bringing the girl to the buyer.
During a month-long investigation, the police collected sufficient evidence and rescued the girl in February 2020. The mother and the broker were both arrested on the same date of rescue and questioned by the police. Before the police, the mother confessed to having arranged her daughter to a man for $3000, amount which she shared with the broker. The mother also confessed that she brought her daughter many times to the same buyer, each time for an amount of $100 to $300. However, the man who allegedly bought the girl has not yet been identified.
Currently, the girl victim is living under the care of a safe home and receiving psycho-social support.
“I welcome the decision of the Phnom Penh Court and commend the court’s effort in applying the child friendly standards during the trial.”, stated APLE’s Lawyer who represented the victim throughout the legal process.