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IJM Applauds Conviction of U.S. Citizen for Sex Crimes Against Cambodian Children

Pedophile Ronald "John” Gerald Boyajian convicted under PROTECT Act after years of deploying avoidance tactics

Washington, DC, March 10,2016

International Justice Mission (IJM), the world’s largest international anti-slavery organization, applauds the recent conviction of U.S. citizen Ronald "John” Gerard Boyajian for committing sex crimes against children in Cambodia between 2002 and 2009. Tried under the PROTECT Act, which seeks to ensure that all children globally are protected from sexual predators, Boyajian now faces up to 30 years in prison.

"This is precisely why the PROTECT Act is such an important law—it gives pedophiles who are [U.S. citizens] no safe haven,” said IJM General Counsel Eric Ha. "Wherever you may try to go to abuse children, this law ensures that you will be held to account for your crimes, and the victims of your abuse will have their day of justice.”

IJM’s involvement in the case began in 2009 when Boyajian was arrested by Cambodian authorities. IJM Cambodia’s staff had been investigating several of the perpetrators who were selling girls to Boyajian and worked closely with the Justice Department and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement on the case in an advisory role.

Since his removal from Cambodia in 2009, Boyajian deployed multiple procedural tactics to evade accountability for his crimes and delay his trial in the USA. Yesterday, his victims finally saw justice served.

"It is our hope that the conclusion of this case will finally bring closure and peace to his victims, many of whom bravely testified against him during his trial,” Ha added. "Further, Mr. Boyajian’s conviction is proof that justice for the poor is possible."

Once ground zero for foreign pedophiles looking to exploit children, Cambodia’s top three commercial sex markets have seen a significant reduction in the prevalence of minors for sale in the commercial sex trade. Read more about Cambodia’s transformation here.

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