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Cambodia arrests European youngsters for debauchery party, mostly Britons

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A prisoner who was arrested in Cambodia for what police describe as ‘pornographic dancing’ with young women tourists say they are innocent and insist they do not know why they have been arrested.

Police in Siem Reap, the popular town close to the famous ancient temples of Angkor Wat in the north west of the country, said the tourists would be appearing in court at a time to be announced.

Police said the group aged from between 19 to 35, and includes five British men, were being questioned so that a case could be submitted against them in the provincial court.

An expatriate website in Cambodia released the scant details put out by police. The website, cambodiaexpatsonline.com, published a number of photos released by the police showing the men and women lying on the floor of a premises together, the men shirtless, while other young people, believed to be tourists, look on.

However one of the prisoners claimed none of those arrested were in the photographs.

The prisoner said they at a villa party barbeque on Thursday at 4pm local time when police started to pluck people out of the crowd.

Among the eight men and two women arrested were Britons Vincent Harley Robert Hook, 35, Daniel Richard Leeming Jones, 30, Thomas Alexander Jeffries, 22, Billy Stevens, 21, and Paul Francis Harris, 32.

Also detained were Dutchman Job Robertus van der Wel, 22, Canadians Jessica Drolet, 25, and Eden Koazoleas, 19, along with Norwegian David Nikolaus Aleksandr Ballovarre, 22, and 32-year-old New Zealander Paul Martin Brasch.

The group were charged yesterday as prosecutors warned that they could face a year in jail for a ‘breach of Cambodian traditions’.

In Cambodia, it is illegal to make pornographic images under the country’s 2007 Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation.

Most of the men are believed to live in the Asian country and could face up to six months behind bars before the case comes to court.

Police released images appearing to show clothed and laughing tourists, some in sexually suggestive positions, at the party before Thursday’s raid.

Some 30 officers are believed to have stormed the venue in what is regarded as a crackdown on inappropriate behaviour.

Up to 90 revellers were initially detained but all but ten were released. The party is believed to have been hosted by an events group called Let’s Get Wet.


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