Russian arrested for child sex abuse in Cambodia


PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — A Russian businessman has been arrested and charged for allegedly having sex with at least six girls in Cambodia, officials said Thursday.

Alexander Trofimov, the chairman of an investment company, was arrested Wednesday at Cambodia’s coastal city of Sihanoukville, said police Maj. Gen. Bit Kimhong, director of the Interior Ministry’s anti-human trafficking department.

The police officer said Trofimov, 41, was arrested on charges of debauchery, a Cambodian legal term for sexual abuse of children that is punishable by 10 to 20 years in jail.

Trofimov allegedly had sex with five girls in 2005 and another one this year, Bit Kimhong said, adding that the girls were between 12 and 18 years old.

Bit Kimhong said the arrest warrant described Trofimov’s alleged crimes as “gravely affecting social morals.”

Police transported Trofimov in a car from Sihanoukville to a court in the capital, Phnom Penh, Thursday.

Sok Kalyan, a Phnom Penh Municipal Court prosecutor, said Thursday he has charged Trofimov with debauchery but declined to elaborate.

In September last year, Trofimov’s company received permission from the Cambodian government to develop an island off Sihanoukville into a tourist resort with an initial investment of up to US$300 million (euro211 million).

The island — Koh Puos or Snake Island — is located about 800 meters (a half-mile) off a popular beach site in Sihanoukville, which is about 185 kilometers (115 miles) southwest of Phnom Penh.