Ten foreigners were arrested in Cambodia for “singing and dancing pornographically,” after a raid on a party in Siem Reap near the tourist destination of Angkor Wat.
Around 4 p.m. last Thursday, Cambodia Police arrived at a popular pool party event called Let's Get Wet in Siem Reap. According to The Washington Post, they began rounding up, mostly, Western tourists and expatriates, and taking them into custody.
One of the prisoners told the Telegraph, “We’re innocent,” adding that authorities have been targeting expatriates living in the country for wearing bikinis in public and attending pub crawls.
They continued to say, “We don't know why we've been arrested — we're getting different stories from different people.”
Cambodian police attempted to clarify the matter for the arrests by issuing a news release and posting photos on the department's official website.
In recent years, Cambodia authorities have been cracking down on Westerners who come to visit and stay in their country and fail to respect the country’s morals and sacred spaces. In 2015, several tourists were arrested for taking naked photographs at the Angkor temple complex; they received suspended sentences and were expelled from Cambodia. As of 2016, tourists showing cleavage or wearing skimpy clothes have been completely banned from the Angkor temple complex.
Samrith Sokhon, the prosecutor of the Siem Reap provincial court, told the Associated Press that the photos taken of the tourists mimicking sex positions were posted on social media, violating the country’s laws against producing pornography and human trafficking.
“Any people producing pornography is contrary to Cambodia’s traditions,” Sohkon said.
According to the Phnom Penh Post, a local news source, if convicted of producing pornographic photos, the accused could be sentenced to a year in prison and fined between $50 and $500.