Court Says Former Monk Allegedly Filmed More Than 600 Women in Secret

Three more women have filed complaints against a former monk alleged to have secretly filmed hundreds of women while bathing naked in holy water, bringing the total number of his victims above 630, police and court officials said yesterday.

Phnom Penh military police deputy commander Pong Savrith said the three women, including one minor, filed their complaints Friday. The municipal court on June 29 charged defrocked Buddhist monk Net Khai with producing and disseminating pornography.

“He confessed to filming naked women since 2008, but we are trying to find out who his accomplices were since we believe that he did not act alone,” Mr Savrith said.

Court director Chiv Keng said Mr Khai was being held in provisional detention at Prey Sar prison and that his trial would begin this month though a court date had not yet been set.

According to Mr Keng, the former monk filmed at least 631 women in all, including 18 minors, during his time at Daun Penh district’s Wat Sras Chak.

“He could be sentenced to 10 to 20 years in jail if he is found guilty,” Mr Keng said.

On July 9, the court also charged Soeun Sopheak, 24, with disseminating pornographic material after police allegedly caught him selling the videos Mr Khai had recorded at his digital download business in Tuol Kok district.

Buddhist authorities began allowing monks to return to Wat Sras Chak on July 21 after conducting a cleansing ceremony and appointing a new abbot to maintain discipline. About 70 monks were ordered to leave on July 2 and had been living at Wat Koh, Wat Sarawanth and Wat Ounalom during the intervening weeks.



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