UPDATE: Five suspects detained in Phang Nga rape case.
‘One-fifth of residents involved in sexual assaults’.
Police have charged them with raping a child age no more than 15 years old, gang-rape, detaining a child of no more than 15 for sexual harassment, using physical and verbal threats, and trespassing into another’s property during night time.
The victim, now 15, has said more than 40 men sexually violated her last year in a shocking case involving crimes that allegedly took place in the quiet village of Ban Koh Raed in Phang Nga’s Takua Thung district.
“Local residents are ready to cooperate with police,” Yuttanakorn Juanjenkij, the Kamnan of Tambon Loryoong, said amid reports about local people’s dissatisfaction regarding the negative publicity affecting their village.
Three of them were previously arrested and released on bail, and they all deny the allegations against them.
It was also found that two of them had traces of amphetamine in their urine, police said.
A lawyer for the defendants, Natharat Nukaew, revealed that all suspects would be detained at the court for now. He said he had been informed that bail for each suspect had been set at 460,000 Baht.
Ban Koh Raed is home to about 180 people, with some residents expressing regret and skepticism about the claim that more than 40 men were involved in sexual assault, which would mean at least one-fifth of residents were party to child rape.
“Think about children who live in the village. They feel stress as such a claim means their fathers may be suspects,” Yuttanakorn said.
“Local residents here are generally close. It is really hard for them to believe such a large-scale crime could have happened in their neighborhood.”