MANILA, Philippines - Finding himself in the center of a raging controversy over his sex videos with model-actress Katrina Halili and two other women, celebrity cosmetic surgeon Hayden Kho is expected to appear at the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) today to explain his side on the controversy, which may cost him his profession and even his freedom.
The NBI issued a subpoena that also covers Kho’s girlfriend Dr. Vicki Belo, also a prominent cosmetic surgeon.
The sex videos have spread on the Internet and DVD copies are bestsellers in many shops in Quiapo.
NBI Director Nestor Mantaring said at a press conference yesterday that a certain Dr. Eric Chua could be one of those who uploaded the videos on YouTube.
“We will summon him. But we have to summon first Dr. Hayden Kho,” Mantaring said.
He said Kho and Belo have just returned from a trip to Japan.
Optical Media Board chairman Edu Manzano said Chua was a fraternity brother of Kho but they allegedly had a falling out. Manzano said they received a tip on the existence of the video last month and that someone was trying to sell the video to producers for P20 million, but he did not say if it was Chua.
“He (Chua) was mentioned in a text message which was received by the manager of Katrina, saying he (Chua) has something to do with the copy of the footage,” Vicente de Guzman III, chief of the Anti-Fraud and Computer Crimes Division of the NBI, said.
“On Dr. Vicki Belo, we have to ask her also how she got a copy of this sex video,” De Guzman said.
“Our target now is to identify who uploaded the video on the Internet. This investigation would not take long since the personalities have already been identified,” he said.
Kho is scheduled to appear at the NBI at 10:30 a.m. and Belo at 1:30 p.m.
De Guzman said, so far, the NBI is looking into Kho’s possible violation of Article 9262 or the law on Crimes Against Women and Children.
Halili, accompanied by Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., on Wednesday filed a complaint against Kho with the NBI.
In an earlier privilege speech entitled “A Doctor’s Perversity,” Revilla lambasted Kho for the sex videos and called on the Philippine Medical Association to revoke his license.
“(It is) a clear case of violation of a woman’s privacy and dignity,” said Human Rights Commission chairman Leila de Lima. “The posting (of the video) was clearly malicious,” she said.
“I hate to say this, but Filipino women clearly do not get enough respect. If Filipino men do not respect Filipino women, how can we expect a human rights culture in a world where our women, including migrant workers, will get respect?”
Association of Major Religious Superiors of the Philippines (AMRSP) co-chair Sister Mary John Mananzan also said Kho should not go unpunished.
“Even if they were consenting adults it does not mean that they should announce to the world what they did. I do not know what legal recourse can be done but this was really extreme. It really demeaned people and reduced them to the level of objects,” Emeritus Novaliches Bishop Teodoro Bacani said.
“We give Katrina our support and we vow to promote every measure to protect and defend women like her (who have been) degraded and humiliated by this kind of malicious act,” Gabriela party-list Rep. Liza Maza said in a statement.
“People are falling over themselves talking, downloading and watching the Halili-Kho video flicks. These talks – along with its discussion in the media – are bound to (stir) children’s interest and curiosity on the matter,” Buhay party-list Rep. Irwin Tieng said.
PNP offers help
Amid the outrage over the spread of the sex videos, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said it is ready to help Halili find justice.
“The PNP will offer or give assistance to those in need of investigation, those who are filing complaints, and those who are in need of security,” PNP Director General Jesus Verzosa said in an interview.
“The PNP will attend to any concern or complaint. We do not discriminate. If there is a complaint we investigate, and if there is a request for security and request for investigation, we will investigate,” Verzosa said.
Immigration Commissioner Marcelino Libanan has placed Dr. Hayden Kho on the Bureau of Immigration’s watchlist to prevent him from leaving the country without clearance from the Department of Justice.
“Pursuant to the Memorandum Order issued by DOJ Secretary Raul Gonzalez, we hereby order the inclusion of the name Hayden Kho in the bureau’s watchlist,” Libanan said in a directive.
Revilla is encouraging the other women in the sex videos to also sue Kho.
The celebrity doctor was reported to have about 40 sex videos in his collection.
Meanwhile, Sen. Pia Cayetano filed Senate Bill 3267 or the “Anti-Video Voyeurism Act of 2009” to curb the proliferation of sex videos by prohibiting and penalizing the recording, sharing, showing or exhibiting of private acts without the consent of the persons involved. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago earlier filed SB 1100 or “An Act Penalizing Photo and Video Voyeurism.”
“I understand the pain, shame and trauma they are going through, but it would be worse for them if they choose instead to keep silent,” Revilla said.
Cayetano, chair of the Senate committee on social justice, described sex videos as the “highest form of invasion of the privacy of the offended party, most of whom are women.”
“Such violation is condemnable and needs to be penalized in the highest degree,” Cayetano said.
Manila Rep. Bienvenido Abante Jr. said Halili and the other women in the sex video should file a P1-billion damage suit against Kho.
“This guy has damaged Katrina forever. He has destroyed her person, her dignity and her respectability. Images of that video will remain in the minds of those who have seen it and who will see it,” Abante told the Serye Café’ news forum in Quezon City.
Abante made the suggestion after Isabela Rep. Giorgidi Aggabao, another forum guest, said a civil suit would have better chances of prospering than a criminal case, citing “weak laws against obscenity and pornography.”
Aggabao, who is a lawyer, said if he were Halili’s counsel, he would advise her to file a civil case and claim damages of P30 million to P50 million.
Another forum guest, Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay, said Kho’s alleged perversity reflects negatively on his upbringing from childhood.
“I don’t want to cast aspersion on his parents, but they are also on the spot in this controversy,” she said.
Abante said Revilla was partly to blame for the proliferation of sex scandal videos.
“Bong Revilla sat on the House-approved Bill 3305 when he was chairman of the Senate public information committee. I talked to him in July last year and he did nothing,” he said.
The bill, of which Abante, Revilla’s counterpart in the House, is principal author, seeks to punish the production, publication, distribution, sale, or exhibition of obscene and pornographic materials, and the exhibition of live sexual acts.
License revocation likely
Kho is likely to lose his license as physician based on Halili’s account of her side in the controversy, the chief lawyer of the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) said.
“Based on her (Halili) story there seems to be a prima facie case against respondent Kho,” Pharson Mamalo said in an interview.
“There is no presentation of evidence yet so we still cannot say if her narration was what really happened. It’s her side of her story and we have to give Dr. Kho due process,” Mamalo said.
He said the PRC legal division has recorded hundreds of complaints involving sex scandals among licensed professionals, including doctors.
“We have hundreds of sex scandal cases but if ever this will be first sex video case,” Mamalo said.
Dr. Minguita Padilla, chairman of the Opinion Bureau of the PMA, told reporters that Kho’s alleged filming of his sexual encounters was “a dangerous kind of perversion,” because it “involves deception and abuse of women.”“He is tall and handsome but something in him worries me,” Padilla said of Kho