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Thai undertaker jailed over hidden foetuses

02 october 2011, 17:57
Buddhist temple. ©RIA Novosti
Buddhist temple. ©RIA Novosti
A court in Thailand on Thursday sentenced an undertaker to 40 months in prison for helping to hide illegally aborted foetuses at a Buddhist temple in Bangkok, AFP reports.

Suthep Chabangbon was convicted by a district court in the capital of concealing 15 of the roughly 2,000 foetuses found last year in the temple's mortuary rooms.

In January his colleague was jailed for 20 years over the case, which highlighted the scale of illegal abortions in a country where the procedure is banned unless delivery would harm the mother or the pregnancy results from rape.

The other suspect, a former nurse who performed illegal abortions, was in August sentenced to five years in prison.

Police have said that some of the corpses had been stored for more than a year.

They would normally have disposed of by placing them with the remains of people being cremated, but the furnaces had broken and the number of bodies had built up while repair work was carried out.

The Women's Health and Reproductive Rights Foundation of Thailand says each year up to 400,000 Thai women undergo abortions carried by untrained people in unhygienic conditions.

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