Film star sex video scandal grips Philippines

MANILA: Steamy sex videos of a cosmetic surgeon and his celebrity patients indulging in more than the standard nip and tuck have gripped the devoutly Roman Catholic Philippines.

Home movies showing Hayden Kho going beyond the usual doctor-patient boundaries with a rising film star and commercial model are spreading around the Internet, as hawkers on Manila’s street corners sell DVDs of their trysts.

The videos and the manner in which they came into the public domain have fascinated and repulsed this deeply religious country.

One of the unwitting stars of the films is up-and-coming actress Katrina Halili, 23, who has now filed a criminal complaint.

Halili is the only woman who has identified herself as one of four appearing separately with Kho in the videos.

“I fully gave my heart and soul to a man who was doing his own movie,” she said. “In our culture, this will stigmatise me for life.” She now has what many young actresses aspire to — instant name recognition — but for all the wrong reasons.

In a country that Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stanley Karnow once described as “300 years in a Catholic convent and 50 years in Hollywood” this fame is working against her. This week workers began pulling down from Manila’s main avenue a large billboard of Halili endorsing a popular local brand of lingerie.

The young actress later confirmed she had lost an endorsement contract and that film and modelling offers had also dried up since the tapes went public.