Cambodian Quack Lands 25-Year Prison Term For Spreading HIV
A Cambodian quack has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for intentionally spreading HIV. At least 10 people have died due to the infection and over a hundred have tested positive.
According to ABC, 56-year-old Yem Chrin practiced medicine without a license in Roka Village since 1996. He is accused of using unsterilized needles that spread HIV in the community. A 106 villagers, including a few Buddhist monks, of the 800 tested have been infected.
Poverty and an inadequate healthcare system in Cambodia often forces people to seek unlicensed doctors like Chrin, who was sentenced for cruel behavior. The quack has spent nearly a year in protective custody as authorities feared he would be killed by the villagers.
The Cambodia Daily wrote that nearly 80 HIV infected people testified against Chrin in the court.
"The court thinks that he's guilty enough with criminal acts: operating an unlicensed clinic, spreading AIDs to victims and torture to cause the death of victims," Judge Chheanavy reportedly said during the sentencing. Chrin claimed he was only trying to help the people.
The quack could have been charged with murder that is punishable with life in prison. The charges were however changed and the court sentenced him to 25 years in prison besides levying a fine. He was also asked to pay compensation to his victims.