PHNOM PENH – British pedophile Michael Glyn Jones, 55, who was jailed in Cambodia for sexually abusing children has had his prison sentence reduced after arguing he only touched the girls in a “Fatherly Way”.
Michael Glyn Jones, was originally jailed for eight years in April after being found guilty of sexually assaulting four girls aged between six and 11 last year.
He had been photographed by police and a child protection group walking hand-in-hand with one young girl and sitting with a number of others, one of whom was on his lap.
He was arrested in June after the children’s mothers lodged complaints about the alleged abuse.
Jones claimed during his original court hearing that he had simply felt sorry for his victims and wanted to buy them ice cream and take the to the cinema.
But his case was brought back before the Court of Appeal in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh last week, where his sentence was reduced from eight to five years.
Jones said that although he had touched his victims, it had been in an innocent way and he had no bad intentions.
According to the Phnom Penh Post, Judge Tith Sothy Boraleak listened to the concluding remarks of the prosecution and defence before reducing the sentence after determining that Jones had not had sex with the victims.
However, he ordered that a fine of 16million Cambodian Reil (£2,500) to the victim’s families be upheld and that Jones remains in detention until he has served his jail term.
Jones arrived in Cambodia in early 2014 as a tourist and had made contact with his victims by offering them small amounts of money and food.
Charity Action Pour Les Enfants (APLE) took pictures of Jones with the young girls while investigating him after suspicions were raised on a visit to the country in 2013.
APLE found that Jones was in contact with an under-age girl whom he took into a rented room in the Lake Side area.
They discovered that although he was staying in a hotel in Phnom Pen, he kept returning to the rented room with the same 11-year-old, an APLE spokesman said.
The charity say Jones took her shopping, bought her food and went to the cinema with her. He is alleged to have been seen ‘hugging and kissing’ the girl and was seen to ‘groom’ three others.
The girls’ mothers filed complaints in June last year, and he was subsequently arrested after a tip-off from APLE.
Laws exist to ban convicted paedophiles from travelling abroad, however UK police have no records of Jones offending in Britain.
Speaking at the time, a South Wales Police spokesman said: ‘South Wales Police Specialist Crime has not been made aware by the authorities in Cambodia of this arrest and are not involved in this investigation.’