A former special constable from Ilkeston, on the run from UK police, has been jailed in Cambodia for sex offences against children.
Ian Bower, who was working as an English teacher in the south-east Asian country, is said to have paid his five victims, aged between 11 and 15, as little as 8p each for sexual favours.
Bower, who had previously been convicted of sexual offences against children and downloading child abuse images at Derby Crown Court, was branded a ‘dangerous man for children’, by the victims’ lawyer, according to local paper The Phnom Penh Post.
Now a charity aimed at ending child sex tourism has claimed it warned the Home Office Bower would strike again.
Christine Beddoe, director of ECPAT UK, said the organisation was ‘appalled’ at the UK Government.
“Innocent children were abused because the UK was unable or unwilling to seek the removal of Bower from Cambodia,” she said.
“Bower is a wanted and dangerous criminal in the UK – he now should serve his sentence in Cambodia and face the full power of the British courts when he returns.”
She said that the 47-year-old should be placed on the Sex Offenders Register for life and be banned from travel outside the UK.
Bower was convicted at Derby Crown Court in September 2004 for offences against children and downloading child abuse images.
He escaped from a bail hostel in Derby in 2006 and fled to Cambodia where he was arested in 2007 for sexual offences against children who he was teaching English.
The charges were dropped when the two victims withdrew their allegations.
It was at that time that ECPAT UK wrote to the Home Office warning of the ‘unacceptable risk to children’ that Bower posed.
A Home Office minister responded that the UK had no formal extradition treaty with Cambodia but said the relevant UK authorities had been ‘continuously and extensively involved’ in the case of Ian Bower.
Bower was sentenced to two years in jail on Monday July 16 and given a fine equivalent to $1,000. He must also pay $500 in compensation to each victim.
His lawyer said he will appeal the sentence.
A spokesman for Derbyshire police said the force will arrest him on his return and ‘seek to deal with him quickly through the court system’.