Attempted double child rapist in court

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The suspect, Beng Roem, 37, was accused of attempting to rape two 12-year-old girls in Kampong Trach district at Kampot Province. Police Photo

Police are due to present a man accused of attempting to rape two 12-year-old girls in Kampong Trach district at Kampot Provincial Court on Wednesday.

Chhem Chheang, Kampot provincial criminal office chief, said the suspect, Beng Roem, 37, is a farmer, while the alleged victims are cousins who live in O’Sleng village. He said Roem had already been interrogated by police.

Chheang said Roem tried to rape the victims on two separate occasions, with the pair being targeted on May 15 and also on May 20.

“We charged him with two counts of attempted rape. I have sent the case to the judge and maybe, after reviewing it, there will be additional charges. This is at the discretion of the judge or prosecutor,” he said.

Chheang said Roem had first tried to rape the two girls on May 15 but was unsuccessful and fled the scene.

Then, on the evening of May 20, he attempted to rape them again, but the girls shouted for help, alerting their families who lodged a complaint with the police, who then later arrested Roem.

The Child Protection Unit (CPU), a local NGO, and authorities took both victims to hospital for a medical examination. The CPU could not be reached for comment.

San Chey, director of the NGO Affiliated Network for Social Accountability, said: “This kind of incident can happen when the morals and values of an individual are compromised. It can also happen because people are drunk or have consumed drugs. “It is another social problem in Cambodia.”