Chencho Dema

Punakha – A 19-year-old monk, involved in the rape of a 12-year-old student on July 23, received a 10-year prison sentence from the Punakha dzongkhag court on December 12.

However, due to four months and twenty-three days spent in detention, the convict will serve nine years, seven months, and eight days, and would be released on May 31, 2033, as per the verdict.

Charged under section 183 of the Penal Code (Amendment) Act of Bhutan 2011, the convict faced a second-degree felony for engaging in sexual intercourse with a child aged twelve to eighteen.

The sentencing ranges from nine to fifteen years imprisonment for this offense. Despite potential second-degree charges, the court considered the monk’s clean record, resulting in a 10-year sentence.

The incident transpired in a Khuruthang hotel on July 23.

Reports suggest that on the incident night, the girl, accompanied by friends, travelled to Bajothang, Wangdue. After returning to Khuruthang, she met the monk, her alleged boyfriend.

The monk, on leave at the time, arrived in Punakha and, before police intervention, had booked a room in a Khuruthang hotel.

Both parties asserted consensual activity, yet the monk was detained for raping a child under 12.