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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Govt to probe film star complaints

Govt to probe film star complaints


Investigation probes karaoke parlours that used actresses's pictures to advertise escort services.

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Cambodian actress Doung Zorida, photographed in March this year. 

THE Ministry of Interior has opened investigations into Phnom Penh karaoke parlours that used the image of film stars to advertise escort services and attract patrons, following complaints from two high-profile starlets.

Ten Borany, deputy director of the ministry's Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department, said authorities would conduct investigations to determine whether the club owners had committed a criminal offence.

"I don't know if we'll have to punish the offenders because we don't know what kind of crime they have committed," he said.

"We are trying our best in order to find justice for the movie stars ... and I hope we can solve the problem for them."

No permission

Film stars Doung Zorida and Veng Sreyno complained to police last month when they found that their images - with price tags attached - were gracing the walls of  local VIP clubs and brothels.

Doung Zorida, whose picture was shown in photo albums at some VIP clubs in Phnom Penh with a price of between US$4,000 and $8,000 attached, said that she had given Ministry of Interior officials additional information to help them in their investigations.

"I believe in the ability of the police and I think that the police know which clubs or madams of prostitution are doing these things, but they need to find evidence before they can arrest them," she said.

She added that legal action was important for clearing her name, and that if she didn't take action, people would think she was involved in prostitution.

"I don't need any money from them. What I need is an apology and a public statement that I and the other movie stars did not sell our bodies," she told the Post.

Ieng Sithul, director of the Khmer Actress Association, said that he was satisfied that police officials were trying to find justice for the two film stars, adding that it would help protect them against the dishonour of being associated with escort clubs.

"I hope that the police will do their best so that the actresses can maintain their honour," he said.

"[These people] are looking down on themselves and their nation because they are the same nationality [as the actresses]. They are destroying their own culture and tradition.

"All people who have power and money should use their money in the right way, to suit their honour and that of their society," he added.



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