Crime: Gelephu dungkhag court yesterday sentenced a 31-year-old man to a year and a half in prison for making a video of him having sexual intercourse with a 24-year old woman in Gelephu in February this year.

The verdict quoted section 476 of the Penal Code of Bhutan, which states that, “a defendant shall be guilty of the offence of computer pornography, if the defendant publishes and distributes an obscene photograph or picture on the computer; or over the internet of an internet service provider, who knowingly acts as a host for pornographic material or acts as a channel for the image to be transmitted to an individual user.”

The court gave him half the sentence, because the Penal Code of Bhutan’s section 134 states the defendant, who is guilty of the offence of criminal attempt, solicitation, or criminal conspiracy, shall be liable to half the penalty awarded to the person, who had committed the crime, if the offence is of third degree felony, fourth degree felony, misdemeanour or petty misdemeanour.

According to the woman’s statement, the defendant is a person she knew from before and had trusted to take a ride in his taxi.  She alleged that he forced her to have sex and filmed it on his cell phone.  She also alleged that he had threatened her not to tell others or he would circulate the clip.

However, the verdict stated that there was no evidence to show that she was forced, and the report from the hospital also didn’t state any forceful act.

The court asked the defendant to pay a month’s national wage, which amounts to Nu 3,750 for defaming her.  The defendant can also pay thrimthue in lieu of imprisonment, the verdict stated.

By Yeshey Deman, Tsirang