AIDS Patient Accused of Paying Minor for Sex

A 37-year-old man suffering from AIDS was arrested in Takeo pro­vince Thursday for allegedly having sex multiple times with a 14-year-old girl, officials said Sunday.

Phann Sarath was well aware that he had AIDS—which is in­curable and can be sexually transmitted—when he took advantage of the girl, who was living with him at the time, according to po­lice and officials with the NGO Part­ners in Compassion, which works to combat HIV/AIDS.

Bati district deputy police chief Khut Lo said that the man had given the girl 5,000 riel to have sex with him over the course of three days beginning Oct 26.

According to San Vandyn of Part­ners in Compassion, Phann Sar­ath’s wife became aware that her husband had been having sex with the girl and reported it to officials from his NGO on Oct 30. The same day, the suspect fled to Battam­bang but returned to his home in Cham­bak commune Nov 6, prompt­­ing Part­ners in Compassion to com­plain to the police.

San Vandyn said the girl had been staying with the suspect be­cause she had run away from home to flee her stepfather, who he said had also been sexually abusing her.

Provincial Chief Prosecutor Chey Sophal said that Phann Sarath has been charged with rape and violating the National AIDS Authority law, because he had sexually a­b­used the girl while fully cognizant of the fact that he has AIDS.

He added that the suspect, who is currently in pretrial detention, could receive between 10 to 15 years in prison if convicted.

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