Malaysia Palace Says Sex Allegations ‘a Private Affair’

KUALA LUMPUR ~ Malaysian royals have described allegations by a teenage US-Indonesian model that she was raped and abused by her Malaysian prince husband as “a private affair” between the couple.

Manohara Odelia Pinot, 17, said this week she was treated like a sex slave after her marriage last year to Tengku Temenggong Mohammad Fakhry, the prince of Kelantan state.

She escaped the prince’s guards at a Singapore hotel and returned to her family in Indonesia with tales of abuse, rape and torture at the hands of the prince.

In its first comments on the matter, palace coordinator Abdul Halim Hamad said “the Kelantan palace authorities are watching and studying this issue and until now consider it as a private affair of a husband and wife that needs to be settled through the provisions of the law.”

Abdul Halim in a statement on Wednesday also said that all the remarks made by Mohamad Soberi Shafli, a friend of the prince, reflected his personal views only.

Soberi had said the ex-model was allowed to leave voluntarily and blamed her mother for influencing her to make up stories about the prince.

Her mother, Daisy Fajarina, said she would press charges against the 31-year-old prince, and accused the Malaysian and Indonesian governments for trying to cover up the alleged abuse.

“Manohara has suffered physical abuse. She’s got several razor cuts on her chest,” Fajarina said.

The teenager – whose fairytale wedding to a prince captured the imagination of Indonesia – said she would be tortured if she did not appear to be happy when she attended social functions with Fakhry.

She said she secretly called Singaporean police and pleaded for help after the royal family took her to Singapore when they accompanied Fakhry’s father, Sultan Ismail Petra Shah II, for medical treatment.

“The police told Fakhry that he would be held in jail if he did not let me go. No one could force me against my will in Singapore and I knew I had a chance to escape,” she said.

Malaysia’s royal rulers used to enjoy immunity from criminal and civil charges but the privilege was removed in 1993.

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