Online Clothes Seller Charged for Pornography

2 min read
Ven Rachna, who sells clothing via her Facebook page under the name Thai Srey Neang, speaks in an apology video posted to the Phnom Penh Municipal Police’s Facebook page on February 18, 2020.

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Friday charged an online clothes seller for pornography and indecent exposure over photos posted to her Facebook page in which the woman is wearing what authorities have deemed suggestive attire.

Ven Rachna, 39, who sells clothing via her Facebook page under the name Thai Srey Neang, was questioned in court on Thursday after being arrested and “educated” by police, and signing a contract and apologizing in a video published on the Phnom Penh police’s Facebook page.

Court spokesman Kuch Kimlong told VOD that the prosecution had finished questioning Rachna and had forwarded her case to the investigating judge on Friday, charging her with alleged pornography crimes in violation of the anti-human trafficking law. 

She was also charged with indecent exposure under the Criminal Code, which carries a maximum punishment of three months in prison and a fine of 500,000 riel ($125).

Convictions for selling and distributing pornography may be punished by up to one month in prison and a fine of 200,000 riel ($50), while sentences for producing pornography carry maximum penalities of a year in prison and a fine of 2 million riel ($500). 

Rachna was first detained by police on Tuesday for posting videos in which she wears clothing that authorities considered too revealing, the Phnom Penh Municipal Police said.

While she had signed a document agreeing not to post any more suggestive images, police detained her again on Wednesday and accused her of posting a photo of herself in underwear hours after she was first brought to the police station.

The charges come after Prime Minister Hun Sen this week ordered ministries to stop women from posting online sales videos while wearing clothes that showed too much skin, a move that gender equality advocates say restricts women’s rights. 

(Translated and edited from the original article on VOD Khmer)

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