UN, cops join to fight sex abuse of children

The Central Investigation Bureau has joined forces with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime to fight child sex tourism.

Pongpat: Confident in new CIB project

The UNODC will transfer academic and legal knowledge to Thai police and support the implementation of the CIB's Community Policing project in Bangkok, Pattaya and Chiang Mai.

As part of the project, CIB officers will be assigned to talk with people about their problems with crime in an attempt to find solutions together.

CIB commissioner Pol Lt Gen Pongpat Chayapan said the Community Policing project has proved successful in other countries. In Uganda it has helped increase child sex abuse prosecutions and in Kenya it reportedly lowered HIV/Aids infection rates.

Gary Lewis, regional representative of the UNODC, said child sex tourism is a global issue and as such is a difficult problem to deal with as many foreign jurisdictions are involved.

The UNODC is also implementing its Australian-funded "Project Childhood" scheme in Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia in a bid to improve the early identification and prosecution of child sex offenders.

World Vision, a France-based child rights, development and advocacy NGO, and the UNODC will supply information on offenders and their movements to police forces in the four countries.

Meanwhile, police yesterday arrested a 20-year-old transvestite in Pran Buri district of Prachuap Khiri Khan for allegedly procuring a girl of 14 and a 24-year-old woman for sexual services.

Kampanart Sonthi was arrested in a sting operation at a hotel.

Mr Kampanart denied the charge and claimed the woman and girl hired him only to drive them to the hotel and that he was unaware of any prostitution.

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Writer: Wassayos Ngamkham
Position: Reporter