PHNOM PENH – The Supreme Court yesterday upheld a 20-year prison sentence for an Austrian man convicted in 2008 of having sex with five underage boys, including a 14-year-old.
Olaf Achleitner, 64, who was working in a riverside restaurant in 2007 when he committed the crimes, had asked the court to show him leniency because he was suffering from “health problems”, including incontinence and a “disease” that attracted him to young boys.
Defence lawyer Dun Vibol argued that his client had a “disease” that made him attracted to young boys and that he should be shown leniency because of health problems.
“My client has a wife and a daughter, but he had a disease which made him want to have sex with boys. In the lower courts, he admitted his faults and, as he is growing older, he has had problems with incontinence,” he said.
Chea Nara, a lawyer representing the victims, said that the serious nature of Achleitner’s crimes should rule out a pardon or sentence reduction.
Presiding judge Khim Ponn upheld the guilty verdict and sentence, which was welcomed by Chea Nara, a lawyer for one of the victims.
Achleitner’s lawyer, Dun Vibol, did not dispute the verdict, but said he wanted a reduced sentence for his client.
Meanwhile, Two Taiwanese nationals and members of a notoriously abusive recruitment agency were convicted yesterday for a second time of human trafficking.
Lin Li-chen, also known as Lin Yu-shin, 44, manager of Giant Ocean International Fishery Co, and her at-large husband, Chen Chun-mu, 49, were sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment each for selling two Cambodian workers into slavery aboard a South African fishing vessel in 2010, said Kor Vany, presiding judge at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court.
“It was ordered that they jointly pay $600 in unpaid salary and 8 million riel ($2,000) each as compensation to the two victims,” said Vandy, adding that an arrest warrant was filed for Chen.
Lin was arrested by the Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Unit in March 2013 after police had received nearly 200 complaints that her company sold men into slavery. Lin’s husband, the marketing director, had already fled the country.
By Kim Sarom