Child rape cases and serious crimes committed against children in Cambodia increased by more than 10 percent last year from the previous year, according to figures of the Child Protection Unit.
The Phnom Penh Post Online reported on Friday that CPU, a joint initiative of the Cambodian Children’s Fund and the National Police, investigated 269 serious crimes against children aged 13.5 and under in 24 provinces last year as well as homicides of children under 15 and younger.
By comparison, the unit investigated 244 such cases in 2015 in 22 provinces.
The figures paint a horrifying picture as rape was, by far, the most common recorded crime, being increased from 167 to 205 with victims as young as two.
CPU director James McCabe said while he anticipated the increase, there is an increased faith and confidence in the policing system to report the crime. Also, he said he was delighted that the homicide rate had dropped from almost 30 to 21 now.
Battambang had the highest crime rates at 36 with Siem Reap close behind at 34 with 90 percent arrest rate for both.
Cambodian Centre for Human Rights’ fair trial rights project coordinator Hun Seanghak agreed that cases need to not only be investigated by police, but also prosecuted in a court of law.
Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)