Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Adhoc logs 145 rape cases, cites minors’ vulnerability

Adhoc logs 145 rape cases, cites minors’ vulnerability

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A man was arrested for raping his sister-in-law in Battambang's Phnom Proek district in September 2020. Police

Adhoc logs 145 rape cases, cites minors’ vulnerability

Rights group Adhoc recorded 145 rape cases last year, most of which involved girls under 18 years old.

Mao Mab, head of the women and children’s division at rights group Adhoc, said her organisation had observed and collected data through its affiliates in the provinces.

She said some of the victims were raped by their relatives and some were even killed.

According to Mab, the main factor leading to rape was the victims’ economic situation. She explained that some parents worked abroad, leaving their children with grandparents who are not strong enough to care for their grandchildren.

Aside from that, she said some victims lived in huts, leaving them vulnerable to abuse.

“In most cases, parents or relatives only realised there was a problem when the child had an injury or pain. Most cases occurred in remote areas, which is another problem,” she said.

Mab added that most girls who were sexually abused did not dare talk about it to their family because perpetrators often threatened to kill them or harm the whole family if they broke the news.

She also attributed the problem to a limited understanding of the law among local people and little faith in the judiciary. She noted that because solving a complaint in court often took too long, the victims’ family sometimes opted to accept civil compensation from perpetrators outside the court system.

“Mostly the victims’ family took compensation [after filing a complaint] and did not pursue the case further in court. Some cases were also facilitated outside of court. This is why impunity persists.

“In criminal cases, even if a victim receives civil compensation, the case will still need to proceed through the court system.

“In most cases, compensation for victims only existed on paper despite a final verdict from the court because it took a long time to process. Therefore, the victims’ family sometimes chose to receive compensation outside the judicial system,” she said.

Regarding complaint procedure, Mab noted that relevant authorities have made greater efforts. Generally when there is a complaint, they would take action against perpetrators.

Mab said the highest number of rape cases was reported in Battambang, Kampot and Kampong Thom provinces. Many parents from these provinces work abroad, so the number tends to be higher than in other provinces, she explained.

Chiv Phally, director of the Ministry of Interior’s anti-human trafficking and juvenile protection department, said on March 15 that if people are aware of a rape case, they should report it immediately to the police, especially the unit closest to them.

Early this month, a 23-year-old woman named Huon Srey, who worked at a casino in Banteay Meanchey province’s Poipet town, was raped and stabbed to death in her rental room.

The suspect, 38-year-old Roeun Thearin, was later arrested in Siem Reap province and was placed in pre-trial detention by the Banteay Meanchey Provincial Court on March 6 on charge of premeditated murder.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor lifetime pass, special Siem Reap travel offers planned

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce a convenient, single lifetime pass for foreign travellers to visit Angkor Archaeological Park and potentially other areas. The move is designed to stimulate tourism to the culturally rich province of Siem Reap as the start of the “Visit

  • Bosba: The first Khmer woman composer from UK’s Cambridge

    Bosba Panh is just 25 years old, but she’s already accomplished some impressive milestones for herself and the Kingdom. On July 24, she graduated with a Master’s degree from the University of Cambridge as the first Khmer woman composer and Khmer music graduate ever at

  • ‘Golden’ Angkor Wat likely due to natural phenomenon: ANA

    Pictures and video clips of the Angkor Wat temple, its spires seemingly coated in gold, have been shared tens of thousands of times on social media, prompting a sense of wonder among those who have seen them. Hong Sam Ath, who took the pictures and

  • Pailin longan winery tries to break through to the big time

    Longan aren’t quite as glamorous as some fruits. They don’t have the star-power of mangos or generate the excitement of a pricey seasonal niche fruit like the pungent durian. Unlike bananas or oranges, which are known and loved everywhere, longan remains a decidedly

  • Debt restructuring over, time to tackle rising NPL ratio

    The Cambodian banking system has just completed a 26-month debt restructuring exercise where scores of loan accounts were revised, classified and provisioned as the rate of non-performing loans inched up, sparking a slight credit risk unease Implemented in April 2020, the Covid-19 debt restructuring measures came

  • Koh Slaket studio resort brings culture with style

    Davitra (Cambodia) Co Ltd’s multi-million-dollar 13ha Koh Slaket studio-cum-resort just east of the capital was inaugurated in the first phase on August 6, providing national and international tourists with a new travel option and job opportunities for locals. The man-made cultural and scenic lakefront getaway