Sat, Jan 10, 2009 - Page 4 News List

‘Shaman’ handed six-year prison term for ‘sexorcism’

DPA , TAIPEI

A man has been sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison for posing as a shaman and having sex with a young woman under the pretense of an exorcism, the Chinese-language Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister paper) reported yesterday.

The Hsinchu District Court sentenced Yang Jih-hua (楊日華), 59, on Thursday on his conviction of rape for having sex with the victim 13 times in 2007 and impregnating her, the report said.

Yang met the victim in early 2007 when she was 20 and was buying lottery tickets. Noticing her palor and weakness, Yang said he had spiritual power and asked the woman to contact him so that he could treat her illness.

The woman visited Yang a few days later. He told the victim that she was possessed by ghosts and must visit him once every week — for a total of 50 visits — so that he could perform rituals “to drive out the ghosts.”

On a later visit in April 2007, Yang told the victim that she was possessed by the ghosts of those she had harmed in a previous life, and he should have sex with her to cleanse her of the ghosts’ semen. He also gave the woman powdered medicine.

From April to July 2007, Yang had sex with the woman 13 times. His fraud was exposed when the woman’s mother found her daughter’s health had deteriorated and that she was pregnant.

The mother made her daughter have an abortion, and a DNA test showed that the fetus was Yang’s, the report said.

When Yang appeared in court, he insisted that Buddha appointed him as a shaman. He denied molesting the woman, saying he only gave her treatment and powdered medicine.

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