Charges dropped against nine out of 10 ‘porn dancers’

Khy Sovuthy / Khmer Times and AFP No Comments Share:
Only one Briton will face trial after 10 foreigners were charged for ‘dancing pornographically’ last month. Supplied

Siem Reap Provincial Court has dropped pornography charges against nine of the ten foreigners arrested last month at a pool party in the province, an official said yesterday.

The group was detained for around two weeks on charges of producing pornographic materials to promote the event at a private villa in the city nearby the famous Angkor Wat temple ruins.

Police, who broke up the party on January 25, initially accused the foreigners of “singing and dancing pornographically”.

“The court has dropped charges against the nine foreigners released on bail. Only one British national will face trial,” court spokesman Yin Srang said, declining to elaborate.

Their lawyer Ouch Sopheaktra said the Briton was held because he was accused of renting the villa and organising the pool party.

A date has yet to be set for the next hearing into his case, the lawyer said.

Charges dropped: Nine ‘porn dancers’ cleared, one still facing court. AFP

All 10 defendants – five Britons, two Canadians, a Norwegian, a New Zealander and a Dutch national – had denied the allegations, saying that they were wearing “sexy” clothing but had not produced pornography during the “Let’s Get Wet” pool party, according to their lawyer.

The ten were earlier charged with production of pornography under Article 39 of the Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation, which carries a maximum prison sentence of one year and a fine from about $50 to $500.

Samrith Sokhon, a prosecutor at the court, said their activities were against “our tradition” and noted Siem Reap’s proximity to Angkor Wat, which in addition to being the country’s most popular tourist site is also considered sacred.

Authorities banned skimpy clothing inside the Angkor Wat complex in 2016 and have previously arrested and deported foreigners for taking racy photos among the ruins.

However, the location of past violations has been inside the ancient city, not in the adjoining town of Siem Reap

The nine cleared of the charges have already returned home.

With AFP

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