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Cambodia 'Medic' Faces Murder Rap After 100 Villagers Get HIV

Image: HIV found in 100 villagers in Cambodia, nurse charged
Cambodian villagers waiting for a blood test check up at a hospital in Roka commune in Battambang province, Cambodia. EPA/STRINGERSTRINGER / EPA

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PHNOM PENH, Cambodia - An unlicensed medical practitioner suspected of negligently infecting more than 100 villagers in northwestern Cambodia with the virus that causes AIDS was charged Monday with murder and other crimes, a prosecutor said. Yem Chhrin was charged with murder carried out with cruelty, intentionally spreading HIV — human immunodeficiency virus — and practicing medicine without a license, said Nuon San, a Battambang provincial court prosecutor.

Health officials say 106 people out of more than 800 tested in Roka village were found to have the virus. Cambodian media have reported that the infected villagers range in age from 3 to 82 years old and include Buddhist monks.

Seng Loch, a senior provincial police officer, said Yem Chhrin acknowledged reusing syringes for treatment of patients, a practice that can spread HIV.

- The Associated Press

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