The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on May 9 placed a village chief in pre-trial detention for allegedly raping his daughter at his home in Trapeang Krasang commune’s Khver village in the capital’s Por Sen Chey district.

Deputy district police chief in charge of crime Chea Sovann identified the suspect as Bin Phat, 56.

Police arrested him on May 6 after receiving a complaint from his 22-year-old daughter.

"According to the victim’s complaint, her biological father raped her several times in the backyard bathroom between March 16 and May 6,” Sovann said.

Citing her accounts, Sovann said every time the suspect raped her, he always "threatened to kill her" if she dared tell her mother, husband, and siblings.

"I endured because I was afraid my husband and neighbours would discover this scandal. The neighbours would despise my family. I hope that my father, as the village chief, would correct his mistakes… Every three to four days he would sneak in to rape me and make a death threat.

"On the night of May 6, I decided to put my embarrassment aside and ... shouted to my mother and neighbours for help," she said.

Sovann said the suspect initially denied the rape, claiming he was drunk and mistook the victim for his wife as it was dark. But Phat later confessed and asked for forgiveness from his wife and daughter.

"The suspect was sent to court on the morning of May 9 and was later that day sent to Prey Sar prison on charges of rape under Article 241 of the Criminial Code,” he said.

Phat faces between seven and 15 years in prison if found guilty.