Backpackers face jail over ‘sexy’ dancing
FIVE backpackers could be jailed for a year after being arrested in Cambodia for allegedly performing "pornographic dancing" at a party.
Cops in Siem Reap, a town close to the ancient temples of Angkor Wat, released pictures of shirtless British men straddling young women on the floor.
But member of the group, whose ages range from 19 to 35, spoke to the Press Association from their cell, under condition of strict anonymity, claiming that they are confused over their arrest.
The prisoner insisted none of those arrested were in the photographs released by police.
The unnamed man said he was cooking at a barbecue at a villa party on Thursday at 4pm local time when police arrived and began picking out revellers from the crowd.
"Honestly, it was really confusing. Everyone was confused. They raided, rounded us up - there was about 80 to 100 people at this party, some of them were tourists.
"There were about 30 of them (police officers)."
The arrested man said the group did not understand why they were being arrested and claimed he saw one of the men vomiting in shock.
The group arrested include five British men; Vincent Harley Robert Hook, 35, Daniel Richard Leeming Jones, 30, Thomas Alexander Jeffries, 22, Billy Stevens, 21, and Paul Francis Harris, 32.
A Dutch national, two Canadian women, a Norwegian man and a New Zealander were also arrested in the afternoon raid.
They said they had been assigned a Cambodian lawyer, and were due in court on Sunday.
The police website pictured a group line-up, which the prisoner confirmed to be the detained group.
The British Foreign Office confirmed they were in contact with tourists in Cambodia, on Saturday evening.
"We are assisting five British men arrested in Cambodia and are providing support to their families," a statement said.
The group confirmed during the call that all of their embassies had been in contact, and were helping the foreign nationals and their families.
They said their lawyer told them they could face up to a year in prison, and that they could be detained on a six-month waiting period if the case went to trial.
The prisoner said from their makeshift cell on Saturday that their families were "worried sick".
He said they have been sleeping on the floor of an office at a police station for three days, and emphasised they had been treated well by their captors - saying officers were friendly and had brought them pizza.
The prisoner said cops have been targeting expats over tourists wearing bikinis in public, specifically relating to expat-run pub crawls in Siem Reap.
"We're innocent," they said. "We don't know why we've been arrested - we're getting different stories from different people."