Everyday thousands of children are being sexually abused. You can stop the abuse of at least one child by simply praying. You can possibly stop the abuse of thousands of children by forwarding the link in First Time Visitor? by email, Twitter or Facebook to every Christian you know. Save a child or lots of children!!!! Do Something, please!

3:15 PM prayer in brief:
Pray for God to stop 1 child from being molested today.
Pray for God to stop 1 child molestation happening now.
Pray for God to rescue 1 child from sexual slavery.
Pray for God to save 1 girl from genital circumcision.
Pray for God to stop 1 girl from becoming a child-bride.
If you have the faith pray for 100 children rather than one.
Give Thanks. There is more to this prayer here

Please note: All my writings and comments appear in bold italics in this colour

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Murder, Pastor, Plea Deals, Teacher All on Today's USA PnP List

California Pastor Charged With Child Sexual Assault

COLTON (CBSLA) – An Orange County pastor is facing misdemeanor charges of sexually assaulting a minor in the San Bernardino County city of Loma Linda.

On Thursday, the San Bernardino County district attorney’s office filed two misdemeanor counts of annoying or molesting a child against 57-year-old Harold Dien of Colton.

While Dien resides in Colton, he is a pastor for the Laguna Indonesian Seventh-day Adventist Church in Laguna Hills, according to the Seventh-day Adventists website.

The alleged abuse did not occur on church property, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department reports.

Deputies began investigating Dien on Feb. 5 after being notified by county Child Protectives Services regarding a possible case of child abuse that occurred in Loma Linda.

Investigators believe Dien may have other victims. Anyone with information should call the sheriff’s department at 909-387-3545.

Iowa prosecutors hearing it from public for
disgusting plea deals

Michael Robinson, Pella, Letter to the Editor
Des Moines Register

Rekha Basu is spot on when she asks in her recent article, "Why is our state so kind to child rapists?"

I keep asking myself the same question. When individuals commit hideous acts such as the rape and abuse of children, the law is in place to provide a legal mechanism to punish such people and isolate them from the public.

Apparently this has been lost on county attorneys and judges in many Iowa counties. There is always an excuse as to why a person such as Randy Johnson was allowed to enter an Alford plea. Randy Johnson had been charged with 13 counts (4th story on link), five felonies and eight misdemeanors for his abuses of a child. Why is this individual not doing hard time? Dallas County District Court Judge Terry Rickers allowed Johnson to enter an Alford plea, but only to injurious child endangerment and indecent exposure. Why wasn’t Johnson tried on all 13 counts? The county attorney’s office had to also agree to the Alford plea in order for the defendant’s attorney to present the plea to the presiding judge.

The county attorneys and judges did not protect the public. Instead they allowed each criminal to be released back out on the streets where they can brutalize a child again.

We do not need additional laws regarding sexual assault and abuse of children. What we do need are for county attorneys and judges to do their jobs. That means for county attorneys and judges to stop agreeing to Alford pleas left and right. Enforce the law, ensure due process and a fair trial, then lock up sexual predators to the full extent of the law.

— Michael Robinson, Pella

Dean Hilpipre, 61, of Alden has pleaded guilty to two felony charges of sex abuse for inappropriately touching his now 7-year-old granddaughter. Because of a plea deal, prosecutors agreed to recommend Hilpipre receive a suspended sentence.

The 7 y/o now has to try and go to sleep at night knowing her grandfather is free and knowing he was not even punished for the evil he committed on her. How is that justice, or even close to it? The creep should be put away until the child is an adult. The problem is, the child has no voice! No lawyer is looking after her rights! The DA should be, but obviously, that's not the case.

Maryland substitute teacher arrested on charges of
sexual abuse of elementary student

CLOVERLY, Md. - A Montgomery County substitute teacher has been arrested on charges of inappropriate touching of an elementary school student, police say.

Montgomery County police say 59-year-old Steven Katz from Columbia, has been charged with Sexual Abuse of a Minor, as well as a fourth-degree sex offense.

According to detectives, on March 8, a Cloverly Elementary School student told his parent that his substitute teacher, identified as Katz, had touched him in a way that made him feel uncomfortable at school that day.

Investigators say the parent told school administrators, who then notified police.

Officers spoke to both the student as well as Katz. They say Katz made admissions related to inappropriately touching the student in their interview.

Katz turned himself into police after a warrant was issued for his arrest, they say.

Police are asking that parents of children who may have had contact with Steven Katz to talk to them and contact police at (240) 773-5400 if they believe their child was victimized.

Sex offender gets 17 years for killing
Massachusetts woman
Marie Szaniszlo 

Jason Fleury, at right, stands for his sentencing in Salem Superior Court after pleading guilty for manslaughter for the 2014 murder of Jaimee Mendez. Steven Mendez, above, holds the hand of Jaimee’s son, Jayson Newton, 9.        

A convicted sex offender charged with first-degree murder in connection with the 2014 death of Jaimee Mendez pleaded guilty yesterday to voluntary manslaughter and was sentenced to 17 years behind bars, despite the objections of the Swampscott mother’s grief-stricken family.

Jason J. Fleury, formerly of Lynn, was scheduled to go to trial on April 3 in Salem Superior Court, where he could have been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole if he had been convicted of the original charge — first-degree murder.

Beatrice Mendez, holds a picture of her niece, Jaimee Mendez, during the hearing at Salem Superior Court where Jason Fleury plead guilty to manslaughter for the 2014 murder of Jaimee Mendez. Friday, March 16, 2018.

“I’m truly terrified about what will happen when this monster is back on the street,” Alyssa Mendez, the victim’s sister, told Associate Justice Thomas Drechsler as Fleury, 39, stared blankly ahead. “Today, your honor, you’re making a deal with the devil. ... I wonder if he felt anything when he watched the life drain from her eyes.”

Assistant District Attorney John Brennan said there were questions that he believed could not have been answered had the case gone to trial.

As a result, both Brennan and Fleury’s attorney, Michael T. Phelan, recommended a sentence of 17 years — three years short of the maximum for voluntary manslaughter — a sentence that Drechsler accepted.

“I hear and feel the loss here,” the judge said. “But nothing I do or the commonwealth does is going to bring Jaimee Mendez back.”

That's true, your honor, but you might have made it more difficult for someone else to join her.

Mendez, 25, was last seen Nov. 6, 2014, getting into a van consistent with the one Fleury owned, Brennan said. When a friend of hers spoke to her by phone later that day, he said, she was scared and told him Fleury “seemed to be on drugs or all coked-out.”

In a dumpster outside a CVS in Lynn, Brennan said, Mendez’s sneakers were found, along with the van’s passenger side door panel and carpet, both of which had droplets of blood consistent with the victim’s DNA profile.

The day after she vanished, Fleury showed up at his landscaping job with scratches on his face and hands, the prosecutor said. Fleury initially denied spending any time with Mendez but later said he had left her at CVS, Brennan said.

Cellphone records showed he had been in the Swampscott area the day she disappeared, he said.

For the next 83 days, police and Mendez’s family searched for her until a dog walker found her skeletal remains washed ashore on King’s Beach in Swampscott on Jan. 28, 2015.

An autopsy found the cause of death was homicide “by violent tendencies,” Brennan said.

Fleury was arrested that August in Hampton, Va., after an Essex County grand jury indicted him on a murder charge in connection with Mendez’s death.

Fleury is a Level 3 sex offender — the level deemed mostly likely to reoffend — who was convicted in 1997 of rape and abuse of a child in Virginia.

And why will this man ever be allowed to walk the streets of USA again, ever? Astonishing!

Swampscott, MA

Friday, 16 March 2018

13 Stories Including Several Young Men Wasting Their Lives on Today's USA PnP List

Forced to marry her rapist at 11, woman finally changes Florida marriage law

USA TODAY NETWORK Brendan Farrington, Associated Press 

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A woman who was 11 when she was forced to marry her rapist has worked for six years to ban child marriages in Florida. On Friday, she was hailed as a hero after the Legislature passed a bill prohibiting marriage for anyone under 17.

State lawmakers have repeatedly cited Sherry Johnson as an inspiration to change the law. She watched in the House gallery as the bill passed the House on a 109-1 vote, then stood as representatives turned to face her and applauded.

“My heart is happy,” she said afterward. “My goal was to protect our children and I feel like my mission has been accomplished. This is not about me. I survived.”

The bill was a compromise between the House and Senate. The Senate originally passed a bill that banned the marriage of anyone under 18, but the House had wanted to carve out exceptions for some 16- and 17-year-olds when there’s a pregnancy.

The bill going to Republican Gov. Rick Scott would set limits on the marriage of 17-year-olds. While pregnancy won’t be a factor, anyone marrying a 17-year-old couldn’t be more than two years older and minors would need parental consent. Scott’s office said he will sign the bill.

Currently, 16- and 17-year-olds can marry with the consent of both sets of parents. If a pregnancy is involved, there’s no minimum age for marriage if a judge approves. A legislative staff analysis showed that between 2012 and 2016, 1,828 marriage licenses were issued in Florida to couples when at least one party was a minor. That includes a 13-year-old, seven 14-year-olds and 29 15-year-olds.

In one case, a 14-year-old married a 15-year-old and in another, a man over the age of 90 was able to marry a girl who was 16 or 17 years old. In some cases, girls were allowed to marry men more than twice their age.

Supporters say changing the law will make sure no child is forced to marry a man who raped her, even if she becomes pregnant. Still, Republican Rep. George Moraitis voted against the bill. While he didn’t say anything during floor debate Friday, he did say last month when he opposed the bill in committee that the current law is “very good, in my opinion, a very carefully crafted balance.”

“There’s literally only a handful of cases that would fall under what I would say are potentially abusive,” said Moraitis, who also is chairman of the Broward County Republican Party. “To focus on a 10-year-old or an 11-year-old or something like that when we’re talking about the hundreds and hundreds of people that could get married. I’m particularly focused on the pregnancy aspect of it. I don’t want the message to be that it’s better to not get married.”

After the vote, Republican bill sponsors Rep. Jeanette Nunez and Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto emerged from their chambers’ floors and greeted Johnson with long, emotional hugs in the rotunda between the chambers. “She’s the star,” Benacquisto said to reporters before rushing back to the Senate floor.

Raped by deacon at 9

Johnson was 9 when she was raped by a church deacon, 10 when she gave birth and 11 when she married the man. Johnson said her church pressured her mother to consent to the marriage and a judge approved it. That was 47 years ago.

She ended up giving birth to five more children with the man before breaking free from the marriage several years later. She wasn’t able to attend school and her experience led to a string of abusive relationships.

While the soon-to-be law wouldn’t have prevented Johnson’s rape or pregnancy, she wouldn’t have been forced to marry, and she said that could have prevented her from years of abuse.

“It would have changed my life by not allowing me to get married, to continue to have children, to continue to have my downfall,” she said. “I would have been a single mother and I think would have done well.”

I think you would certainly have done well.

Maine high court voids guilty plea in child sex abuse case, citing judge’s error

Miles Greenacre | Maine Judicial Branch

By Christopher Cousins, BDN Staff 

A Sidney man serving 50 years in prison for child sexual abuse will have his case reconsidered following a Thursday ruling by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court that vacates his guilty plea and some of the findings against him during prosecution.

Eric Bard, 25, of Sidney, who is accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a 4-year-old girl he was babysitting and recording it with his cellphone, pleaded guilty in 2014 to 21 charges, including sexual assault and sexual exploitation of a minor. Because of the guilty plea, there was no trial and Bard was sent to prison.

However, a law court decision released Thursday found that a judge and the prosecutor in the original case held an improper meeting without Bard’s attorney present, leading to a violation of Bard’s due process rights.

“To be clear, no adjudication or determination of actual bias has occurred and we do not reach any such finding here,” reads the decision. “Rather, we base our decision on the defendant’s due process rights implicated by the potential for bias and the importance of public trust and confidence in the procedures employed by the courts.”

I'm sorry - he was guilty, he admitted he was guilty, and there was potential for bias because the prosecutor said he was guilty in front of the judge? Would she not have said the same thing if defense council had been present? But somehow, there would have been no potential for bias then!

During the pre-trial motions period of the case, Justice Donald Marden met with Kennebec County District Attorney Maeghan Maloney for a conversation about whether Maloney made an ethical error when she contacted two pretrial services agencies about supervising Bard while he was released on bail. Bard’s defense team was not notified about the meeting until later, when Marden assured them that the facts of the case were not discussed during the meeting. Bard’s attorney did not request a transcript of the meeting.

However, the law court found that the discussion involved issues related to Bard’s competency for trial; suggestions from Marden about how Maloney might proceed with the case; and Maloney making comments about her belief that Bard was guilty and how emotionally difficult it is to prosecute cases involving child sexual abuse.

Marden later ruled against Bard on motions to dismiss the case, suppress evidence allegedly found in Bard’s home as well as finding him mentally competent to enter the guilty plea. Thursday’s decision vacates those decisions, as well as Bard’s guilty plea.

“On these facts, we are persuaded that Bard was deprived of the fair process to which he was entitled,” reads the ruling.

Attorney Gina Yamartino, who is now representing Bard, said in a prepared statement that “every defendant has the right to an impartial judge.”

“The court was persuaded that our client was deprived of the fair process to which he was entitled,” said Yamartino. “A due process infirmity arose when the trial court held an ex parte conference on a subject directly related to the charges against our client.”

Good grief! Must have been a slow week on the Supreme Court bench!

Sidney, Maine

Michigan Senate passes 10 Nassar-related
child sex assault bills

In spite of MSU President Engler's attempts to stall them

By Mila Murray mila.murray@statenews.com

Larry Nassar's defense attorney Matt Newburg and Nassar listen to a victim impact statement on the second day of sentencing for Larry Nassar on Feb. 2, 2018, in the Eaton County courtroom. Nassar faces three counts of criminal sexual conduct in Eaton. (Annie Barker | State News)

In the wake of the ex-MSU and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar sexual abuse case, a package of 10 bills were passed in the Michigan Senate on Wednesday that would give victims of abuse more time to sue, increase the number of people required to report suspected abuse, increase the punishment for those who fail to report, eliminate immunity for those who committed criminal sexual conduct and enhance the felony penalty for child pornography charges. 

These bills, senate bills 871-880, were introduced on Feb. 26 and were supported by some Nassar survivors.

The Michigan Senate voted to retroactively give victims of abuse more time to sue in senate bills 871-873. These bills seek to "eliminate the statute of limitations on second-degree criminal sexual conduct (CSC) involving a victim under 18 years old" and allow "an indictment for third-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a victim under 18 to be filed within 30 years after the offense or by the victim's 48th birthday," the bill analysis states. 

The senate voted to amend the Child Protection law in bill 874, specifying that if those who are "required to report suspected child abuse or child neglect" knowingly failed to report it if they had direct knowledge of the abuse, they are guilty of a felony. These bills called for the penalty of not reporting to be higher.

Bill 877 eliminated governmental immunity for individuals and entities that have committed sexual assault. The bill analysis states that, "a member, officer, employee, or agent of a governmental agency or a volunteer who engaged in sexual misconduct while employed or acting on behalf of the governmental agency would not be immune under the law from tort liability."

And bill 878 would "prescribe an enhanced felony penalty" for those in possession of child pornography.

This bill package was sponsored by Sen. Margaret O'Brien, Sen. David Knezek, Sen. Rick Jones, Sen. Marty Knollenberg, Sen. Curtis Hertel, Jr. and Sen. Ken Horn. The legislation will now move to the House of Representatives, where it would have to pass and be signed by Gover. Rick Snyder before it becomes law. 

On Wednesday, when the bills were in the Senate, Interim MSU President John Engler visited the Senate to address the legislation, ESPN reports. Engler favored parts of the legislation and asked senators to hold off voting on other parts of the legislation until more "fiscal analysis could be done."

Rachael Denhollander, the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar of abuse, spoke out against Engler and his visit to the Senate. Her Facebook post reads:

"MSU President Engler personally went to the Senate and tried to kill our legislative package to give assault survivors access to the justice system, and protect children. MSU spokesman Truscott says I have no business expressing concern about this, because I'm talking about something I know nothing about. This is how MSU treats sexual assault victims. Feel safe yet?"

Ultimately, the amended bill package was passed.

"This package of bills delivers justice, justice for the children who were sexually assaulted," O'Brien said in the ESPN article.

3 men plead guilty in sexual abuse case in
South Dakota
Associated Press

ABERDEEN, S.D. – Five men facing charges in a Marshall County sexual abuse case involving a teenager have accepted plea agreements.

The American News reports that 20-year-old Michael Mejilla pleaded guilty to three charges Wednesday. The day before, 21-year-old Damon Koop and 28-year-old Dustin Purcell entered guilty pleas.

They were arrested in October along with 29-year-old Edgar Ramos and 26-year-old Luis Maaz, who have also entered guilty pleas. Court documents say the men were charged for illegal sexual interactions with a girl who was younger than 16.

Three defendants originally faced child pornography charges for exchanging images with the teenager through social media. State law says it’s illegal for someone under 16 to consent to sexual acts and illegal for those younger than 18 to send or receive sexual images.

Sentencing is expected in April or May.

Marshall Co., SD

OK pair found guilty of child sexual abuse
By Mike Elswick Phoenix Staff Writer 
A Muskogee County jury on Friday recommended a 30-year prison sentence to Uvaldo Hernandez and a 20-year sentence to Jorge Romero-Sanchez on child sexual abuse charges after finding both men guilty.

The five-woman, seven-man jury deliberated more than two hours Friday after being seated in Judge Thomas Alford's courtroom earlier in the week.

Hernandez, 57, of Muskogee was charged with child sexual abuse of a family member. Between early 2010 and the end of 2014, he was charged with sexually abusing a child who was 12 years old at the beginning of the alleged abuse.

Muskogee County District Attorney Orvil Loge said Judge Thomas Alford scheduled sentencing for both men on April 25. He said both sentences required 85 percent of the term be served, meaning if sentenced as the jury recommended, Hernandez will have to serve more than 25 years before being eligible for parole and Romero-Sanchez will have to serve 17 years before he could be paroled.

Hernandez, also known as Ubaldo Hernandez-Ortizwas accused of fondling the child and of sexually abusing the child orally and in other ways, court records said. The incidents reportedly happened several times during the five-year time frame.

Romero-Sanchez, 42, also was charged with maliciously sexually abusing the same child by touching the her genital area, breasts, thighs and kissing the child all over her body.

Assistant Muskogee County District Attorney Nalani Ching prosecuted the case for the state. Representing Hernandez and Sanchez was attorney Andrew Hayes.

Among witnesses testifying were Muskogee Police Department officers, a representative of Kids' Space, the victim, who is now older than 18, and family members. Ching said it is not unusual for a victim in child sexual abuse cases to be reluctant to talk about those instances and to not come forward immediately.

She said Hernandez' testimony had conflicting accounts. Ching questioned his recollection of specific details when he admitted to being drunk. Hernandez said when he was intoxicated, he never recalled having any sexual contact with the victim. Hernandez said he felt he would have remembered something like that if it happened.

Ching said at one point Hernandez indicated the child had a history of lying, and he later contradicted that.

Ching said there was no testimony presented by family members that indicated inconsistencies in what happened to the child. On questioning Muskogee Police Officer Lynn Hamlin, who interviewed the child in 2015, Ching asked about vagueness of the victim's testimony.

"Is it unusual for a victim of things like this, is it unusual for someone who has been perpetrated on like this to not necessarily remember the first time something happened?" Ching said. "Is it unusual for someone to say, 'you know what, I didn't realize what was happening to me was wrong?'"

Hamlin said neither of those instances was unusual when dealing with a child.

Ching said when the victim finally came forward making the accusations, she had no job, no plan on where to go and had left the security of a home that provided basic needs of housing and food. She said when the victim came forward, she left the home with only a backpack of personal items, while she left behind two closets full of clothes.

Hernandez and Romero-Sanchez will be formally sentenced at a later date.

Iowa man arrested for sexual abuse
By KCRG-TV9 Staff
FARLEY, Iowa -- Police have arrested a Dubuque County man for allegedly sexually abusing a child. He's 24-year-old Jake Skahill from Farley.

Court documents show the young child's mother became suspicious when the child claimed to have a secret. The documents show the abuse happened over four days in February.

The charge against Skahill is second degree sexual abuse, and it carries a penalty of up to 25 years in prison.

Texas Sunday School Teacher Arrested
For Sexual Abuse Of Child
By Payton Potter, Patch Staff

MESQUITE, TX — One Mesquite man and longtime member of Parkside Baptist Church was arrested Thursday after an investigation led police suspect him of sexually abusing a child.

According to a release from Mesquite Police Department, 23-year-old Benjamin Baldiviez is charged with one count of Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child and is held on a $100,000 bail.

Baldiviez was a Sunday school teacher and volunteer at the church before his arrest, police said. He is accused of abusing a child on church property and during church events from March 2017 to October 2017.

Police believe other children at the church could be victims of sexual abuse. Anyone with information about sexual abuse of children is urged to contact the Mesquite Police Department at 972-285-6336.

Child-on-child sexual abuse:
Big military base problem in Texas
David Burge, El Paso Times 

Fort Bliss has a diverse mission set, including being the home station for the 1st Armored Division and the Army's largest training area. 

Children-on-children sexual assault is a problem across the military, according to an investigation by the Associated Press.

El Paso, TX

In Texas, there were 56 reported cases of sex assault or rape among juveniles at military bases since 2007.

At Fort Bliss, there were 10 such cases, while Fort Hood in Central Texas had 41 during the same time frame, according to the Associated Press.

Fort Bliss officials said the post and the Army take the issue seriously and have a wide range of programs, procedures and services designed to stop sexual assault or abuse.

“Regardless of the type of assault or harassment, installation personnel are trained to spot abuse and report it to either local Child Protective Services, to the police, the Fort Bliss Family Advocacy program, or our Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program folks,” said Guy Volb, the director of Garrison Public Affairs at Fort Bliss.

Volb said that among the methods used to to address the issue and educate the community are: behavioral health consultations for children, adolescents and families, school-based behavioral health services, and community outreach efforts to create a partnership between on-post and local community agencies that serve Army children and families.

“Reports of assaults and rapes among kids on military bases often die on the desks of prosecutors, even when an attacker confesses”

“Our family members, uniformed service members, and civilian workforce are all extremely important to the Fort Bliss family,” Volb said. “And as such, we continue to do everything we can to protect them as they live, work, and play on and off post.”

The Associated Press documented nearly 600 cases of this type of sex assault on military bases during the past 11 years. The news organization used a combination of interviews and records and data pieced together from the military’s four main branches and the military’s school system.

“Reports of assaults and rapes among kids on military bases often die on the desks of prosecutors, even when an attacker confesses,” the Associated Press reported.

Part of the problem is sexual assault cases involving children can be difficult to investigate and “messy to prosecute,” according to the Associated Press.

The report also cites a complex jurisdictional maze that often leaves these cases in what it called a “dead zone of justice with neither the victim or offender receiving help.”

The Associated Press began investigating sexual violence among military children after readers of its 2017 investigation of sexual assault in U.S. public schools described an even more complex problem at military bases.

Pentagon officials promised to take “appropriate actions” and called this an emerging problem, according to the Associated Press.

The Associated Press, however, found that military lawyers had been warning about a juvenile justice “black hole” on military bases since the 1970s.

Fort Bliss has grown from having about 9,000 active-duty service members to more than 30,000 in the past decade.

The growth primarily resulted from moving the 1st Armored Division to Fort Bliss from its previous home in Germany. The post also has added a variety of new missions in recent years, including being home to the Joint Modernization Command, which helps to spearhead Army and joint modernization efforts.

White Plains, NY man convicted of
sexually abusing a young girl
Christopher J. Eberhart, ceberhart@lohud.com 

A 44-year-old White Plains man was convicted Friday of sexually abusing a young child for two years. 

Jard Hobbs was found guilty of first-degree course of sexual conduct against a child and second-degree rape, both felonies, and endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor. 

The sexual abuse began when the girl was 11 and ended when she was 13, at which time she told her family who reported it to Rye police, prosecutors said.

After finding DNA evidence in the victim's shorts, Hobbs was arrested in his White Plains home last July. 

He was remanded without bail while he waits for his sentencing, which is scheduled for May 15.

He faces up to 32 years in prison with post-release supervision and will have to register as a sex offender after he gets out of jail. 

N Carolina traveling pastor in the U.S. illegally
faces child-sex charges
BY JOE JOHNSON jjohnson@heraldsun.com

A traveling pastor in Durham has been arrested by State Bureau of Investigation officers on charges of alleged child sex abuse charges.

Juan Alberto Juarez Saravia, 35, a Salvadoran immigrant who entered the U.S. illegally, worked primarily in the Hispanic community in the Durham area, according to SBI investigators. He was one of 76 people arrested during a mutually coordinated law enforcement operation among eight southeastern states. Operation Southern Impact II also resulted in 13 children being rescued or identified as victims.

The Department of Homeland Security participated in the operation.

Saravia admitted to using a fictitious identity Facebook account to entice a 14-year-old Virginia girl into producing sexually explicit videos of herself which she then sent to Saravia, SBI investigators said. There may be more minor victims, investigators said.

Investigators are concerned because if there are more victims who are undocumented immigrants, they may be less likely to report the crimes committed against them.

Saravia was charged with first-degree sexual exploitation of a minor, second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and taking indecent liberties with a child. Saravia was being held in the Durham County jail in lieu of $750,000 bail.

The SBI is working with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to determine Saravia's precise immigration status and whether or not he previously has been deported.

Pleasant Valley, NY man charged with
sex assault against child
Nina Schutzman, Poughkeepsie Journal 

A Pleasant Valley man is accused of sexually assaulting a young child over a two year time period, according to the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office.

Cesar Contreras Castillo, 23, has been charged with predatory sexual assault against a child, a felony.

An investigation by the sheriff's office and the Dutchess County Child Advocacy Center led to Contreras Castillo's arrest.

"The assaults weren’t arbitrary, so at this time there does not appear to be any threat to public safety," Capt. John Watterson of the sheriff's office said, via news release. "All further details about the case are being withheld to protect the victim’s privacy."

Contreras Castillo was arraigned in the Town of Pleasant Valley Court and sent to Dutchess County Jail with no bail. He's due back in court on March 20, according to the jail.

Anyone with information about this case or other incidents involving Contreras Castillo are asked to contact Deputy Ben Sistarenik at 845-486-3778. The Sheriff’s Office can also be contacted at 845-605-CLUE (2583) or dcsotips@gmail.com. All information will be kept confidential.

Minnesota man sentenced in Wisconsin
for child sex abuse
Jacob Vogel

ALMA, Wisconsin – A southeastern Minnesota man is going to prison for sexual abuse.

33-year-old Jacob Daniel Vogel of Winona pleaded guilty to 1st degree child sex assault and child enticement in Buffalo County, Wisconsin. Authorities say he abused a child under the age of 13 sometime in March 2016. He was arrested after an investigation by the FBI, the Buffalo County Sheriff’s Office, and the Holmen Police Department.

Vogel has been sentenced to 15 years in prison and 20 years of extended supervision. He must also register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.

Buffalo Co., Wis

PA man arrested for child rape, sexual abuse
By Myles Snyder, ABC27 News

CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) – A Cumberland County man has been arrested on child sexual abuse charges involving multiple victims and spanning almost 20 years, police said.

Scott P. Shannon, 56, of Carlisle, was arraigned Friday on 18 counts including rape of a child, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, aggravated indecent assault, corruption of minors, and unlawful contact with a minor.

Police said Shannon abused the children when they were between the ages of 5 and 9 years old.

The charges against Shannon are outlined in three separate criminal dockets. Bail in each of the cases was set at $250,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 28.

Police said their investigation is ongoing to determine whether there are any additional victims. Anyone with information should call Carlisle police Detective Klinger at 717-243-5252 ext. 3.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

U.S. Figure Skating Joins List of Organizations Where Pedophiles are Protected

One by one USA's Olympic Sports development programs have revealed their ugly underbellies of child sex abuse.
This will continue until every major sport in the country is included.
It's time for Congress to launch a major inquiry into child sex exploitation in sports.
It's time to take the lead for a change. 

Coach Richard Callahan stands next to defending world and U.S. champion Tara Lipinski as judges reveal their scores following her short program routine at the U.S. National Figure Skating Championships in Philadelphia, Jan. 8, 1998.Reuters

Craig Maurizi has been here before.

In 1999, he accused Richard Callaghan, once figure skating’s top coach, of sexually abusing him when he was one of his students more than a decade earlier. He reported the abuse to the sport’s national governing body. He told his story to several major media outlets.

But Callaghan issued strong denials. Maurizi’s claims were dismissed. Callaghan kept coaching.

Now, nearly two decades later, Maurizi has brought his allegations against Callaghan – and U.S. Figure Skating’s handling of those allegations – back into the spotlight. He filed a new complaint to the U.S. Center for SafeSport, the U.S. Olympic Committee’s misconduct watchdog, in January.

This time might be different. Last week, the U.S. Center for SafeSport suspended Callaghan, pending a new investigation of those earlier allegations. His name was added to U.S. Figure Skating’s roster of banned or suspended members late Wednesday night — listed alongside more than a dozen others publicly shamed for various alleged misdeeds — barring him from all USFS-sanctioned events until further notice.

Upon hearing the news of Callaghan’s suspension, Maurizi says he was overcome by a mix of emotions. Happiness. Vindication. Relief. Then he settled on another one.

“The truth is that as the days are passing,” Maurizi told ABC News, “my anger is growing.”

That’s because Callaghan had been permitted to continue coaching under the auspices of U.S. Figure Skating despite the organization receiving from Maurizi what he calls “a mountain of evidence” to support his claims.

Maurizi submitted a tranche of documents to SafeSport – mostly letters to and from skaters, coaches and skating officials regarding his case – many of which had also been submitted to U.S. Figure Skating nearly 20 years ago. He also provided those same documents to ABC News.

“The more I thought about it the more it became clear that I had an obligation to try again to stop this man from coaching once and for all,” Maurizi told ABC News. “I would have a tremendous sense of guilt if I found out that he was still doing this to children and I didn’t do anything, so I had to do everything in my power to stop it.”

Maurizi is also exploring his legal options. He recently retained the services of the California law firm that represents many of the athletes who accused USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar of sexual abuse. He says he is focused on “getting the job done,” making sure Callaghan never coaches again.

When reached for comment on Friday, Callaghan told ABC News he had not been notified of his suspension. When asked by ABC News about Maurizi’s allegations, however, Callaghan said he had no further comment.

“That’s 19 or 20 years ago,” Callaghan said. “I have nothing to say.”

The documents, however, indicate that U.S. Figure Skating took no disciplinary action following detailed allegations of sexual misconduct levied against Callaghan by several male skaters stemming from incidents from 1977 to 1995.

U.S. Figure Skating has said that Maurizi’s claims were dismissed without full consideration because skating bylaws stipulated that alleged violations be reported within 60 days, and according to a spokesperson U.S. Figure had not received any abuse claims about Callaghan before or since. “Prior to Mr. Maurizi’s complaint regarding the alleged sex abuse by Mr. Callaghan, there was never a complaint submitted to U.S. Figure Skating prior to 1999 nor has any complaint been received from anyone since regarding any alleged misconduct by Mr. Callaghan,” said a spokesperson in a statement.

Both Maurizi and the former skating official who initially received Maurizi’s grievance are highly critical of the association’s handling of his allegations, however.

“It was, without a doubt,” Maurizi told ABC News,” a deliberate cover-up.”


U.S. Figure Skating is the latest national sports governing body to reckon with its alleged failure to protect young athletes. USOC CEO Scott Blackmun resigned in February amid ongoing scandals surrounding the handling of sexual abuse allegations by USA Gymnastics and USA Swimming.

According to Christine Brennan, a sports columnist and ABC News contributor who trailed several top skaters and coaches, including Callaghan, during the 1994-95 season for her 1996 book Inside Edge: A Revealing Journey into the Secret World of Figure Skating, the culture within figure skating is such that coaches are given an incredible amount of responsibility, and control, over their students.

"Figure skating is a sport in which parents often give their kids over to the coaches,” Brennan said. “The level of trust is extraordinary, even more than we see with gymnastics and swimming. Sometimes families split so the mother can move with the child who skates to follow a coach or go to a particular rink in another part of the country, while the father stays home with the non-skating kids. There is an inordinate amount of trust that a skating family places in a coach in a sport like figure skating."

This is the second such case to be brought to U.S. Figure Skating’s doorstep in recent weeks. Manly, Stewart & Finaldi, the California firm representing Maurizi, recently filed a lawsuit on behalf of a former member of the USA National Figure Skating Team against U.S. Figure Skating, former coach Donald Vincent and a pair of Los Angeles-area ice rinks. According to Vince Finaldi, cases like Vincent’s are “one more example of the culture of child abuse that is rampant in our Olympic sports programs.”

“Figure skating,” he said, “is no exception.”

Vince Finaldi is attorney with the California law firm that represents many of the athletes who accused USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar of sexual abuse. ABC News

Vincent was convicted in 2014 of abusing two of his students between 2007 and 2011 and is currently serving a sentence of 98 years to life in prison. According to the complaint, skating officials had received previous abuse allegations against him, raising the question of why he had been permitted to continue coaching.

“We believe that this is a problem with USA Figure Skating that has not been uncovered,” Finaldi told ABC News. “I think this is the beginning of an eye-opening inquiry."

A spokesperson for U.S. Figure Skating pushed back against that assertion, touting the organization’s policy of zero tolerance for abuse and harassment, pointing to a mandatory reporting rule put in place in 2000 and providing a timeline the organization says “makes clear that U.S. Figure Skating does not have ‘a systemic abuse problem.’”

When asked directly about the the two individual cases – one old, the other new – U.S. Figure Skating released a pair of statements that shed little light on how the allegations were handled.

“U.S. Figure Skating suspended the membership of Richard Callaghan on March 6, 2018, in compliance with the policies and procedures of the U.S. Center for SafeSport,” the statement reads. “This action prohibits Callaghan from participating, in any capacity, in any activity or competition authorized by, organized by, or under the auspices of U.S. Figure Skating, the U.S. Olympic Committee and all USOC-member National Governing Bodies, including U.S. Figure Skating-member clubs and/or organizations. As the U.S. Center for SafeSport has exclusive jurisdiction and adjudication of this matter, U.S. Figure Skating will have no further comment.”

The governing body was similarly tight-lipped on the subject of Vincent.

“U.S. Figure Skating has no comment on pending litigation other than to state U.S. Figure Skating denies all claims asserted against U.S. Figure Skating in the suit, and denies it has any liability in that matter.”


Maurizi began taking lessons from Callaghan at the Buffalo Skating Club in 1976. He says Callaghan began abusing him the following year, when he was 14, showing him pornography, masturbating in front of him and grabbing him by the genitals. The alleged sexual encounters grew more intense, he says, after Maurizi followed Callaghan to the Philadelphia Skating Club in 1981, when Maurizi was 18, and ultimately included multiple instances of oral and anal sex, sometimes in group situations with other students.

In 1986, when he was 23, Maurizi says he began refusing Callaghan’s sexual advances. A pairs skater who once finished fifth at the U.S. National Championships, Maurizi quit skating competitively and turned to coaching, twice working as an assistant to Callaghan, once in San Diego and then again in Detroit, where they trained Tara Lipinski ahead of her gold-medal performance at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano.

Lipinski’s decision following the competition to leave Callaghan’s stable of skaters to train exclusively with Maurizi led to a bitter feud between the two men, ending their professional relationship.

It was only then, Maurizi says, having finally distanced himself from Callaghan, that Maurizi realized the impropriety of his former coach’s behavior.

“I finally started thinking for myself,” Maurizi would say later. “And I looked back on some of the things that had happened to me, and I was horrified.”

Maurizi, a promising pairs skater, trained under Callaghan (back left) for many years. ABC News

After discussions with friends and, later, his then-wife, he decided to come forward. He says he reported the alleged abuse in a phone call with U.S. Figure Skating president Jimmy Disbrow, who ran the sport from 1998 to 2000, but fearing Callaghan’s reputation would deter a proper investigation, Maurizi also took his story to the media, eager to see Callaghan banned from coaching as soon as possible.

The New York Times published Maurizi’s allegations of “inappropriate sexual conduct” on April 11, 1999, alongside Callaghan’s vigorous denials, including suggestions that Maurizi’s claims were nothing more than character assassination motivated by a desire to poach more skaters from a now rival coach. Callaghan told the New York Times he never had sex with Maurizi and dismissed any suggestion that he had engaged in any improper behavior.

But Maurizi wasn’t alone in making allegations against Callaghan. One former student told the Times Callaghan exposed himself to him in 1992. Another said Callaghan made “inappropriate sexual remarks” to him in 1994. One former colleague of Callaghan’s told the Times three skaters told her in 1986 they had either seen or been subject to his sexual advances. Another said two skaters told her they saw him kissing a student in 1991.

In an appearance on ABC News’ Good Morning America the day after the New York Times first published the allegations, Maurizi told Diane Sawyer that he was aware of multiple other skaters who suffered similar abuses.

“I’ve spoken with five former male students who had inappropriate sexual relations with Richard,” Maurizi said.


Many of the same people who spoke to the Times ultimately submitted letters to U.S. Figure Skating supporting Maurizi’s allegations. And another former student submitted a letter saying when he was 21 he was twice “coerced” into sexual acts by Callaghan alongside Maurizi in 1983.

According to Steven Hazen, however, the former skating official who was charged with handling Maurizi’s initial complaint against Callaghan, an investigation never took place.

In an April 23, 1999, letter, Thomas James, an attorney representing U.S. Figure Skating, told Hazen that he had been “disqualified” from handling the case. James argued recent postings by Hazen on an Internet forum urging users to refrain from speculating about the case called into question "your ability to fairly and impartially address this matter” and could even be construed as "threats of potential action" that "likely constitute an inappropriate exercise of power and authority.”

He instructed Hazen to forward any materials to him and take no further action regarding the case.

Hazen was outraged. In response to James, Hazen “unequivocally and completely rejected” James’ assertions, blasting the letter as a “blatant attempt to interfere with the grievance process” in an “effort to intimidate me into abandoning my responsibilities.”

“It wasn’t clear to me where the resistance lay,” Hazen told ABC News, “but it was clear to me that there were people at USFSA who did not want that matter to go forward.”

On May 4, USFS president Disbrow notified Maurizi that Hazen had been removed from handling the case. “Please be advised that, on this particular grievance matter, Mr. Hazen will not serve in the position of Grievance Committee Chair and does not have the authority to communicate with you in the capacity,” Disbrow wrote.

Hazen forwarded materials he had collected to the ethics committee chair. Under the procedures then in place, Hazen told ABC News, if that official decided the claims had merit, he would refer the matter back to the grievance committee, and a three-person commission would be empaneled to investigate the claims, interview witnesses and make a determination.

That never happened. Just two weeks later, Hazen was not reappointed as grievance committee chair after serving in his position for only one year, and the head of the ethics committee now handling the claim was also being replaced.

Ultimately, it was Disbrow, a few weeks later, who made the final determination. He wrote to Jackson on May 27, ruling that Maurizi's claims were being dismissed "for a variety of reasons, both legal and equitable, pertaining principally to delay and limitation of actions.”

Translation: They were too old. Disbrow instructed the new ethics committee chair Jon Jackson to deliver the news to Maurizi. “I have determined that … your grievance is time barred,” he wrote to Maurizi the following day, noting the governing body’s bylaws stipulate that grievances must be filed within 60 days of the alleged violation or its discovery.

(The U.S. Center for SafeSport, which now has exclusive jurisdiction over allegations of sexual misconduct reported to national sports governing bodies, does not time bar any claims.)

Craig Maurizi, 55, sat down for an interview with ABC News Paula Faris, March 12, 2018. ABC News

The final ruling raises several questions for Hazen. “It does raise a red flag that actions were taken that did not conform to procedure,” Hazen told ABC News. “I believed that the USFSA had the full discretion to move forward if they wanted to.”

Maurizi told ABC News that he was never interviewed about his allegations by Jackson, Disbrow (who died in 2002), or anyone else at U.S. Figure Skating.

Jackson issued a statement that did not seem to address his handling of the case, instead referring to his past intention to write a tell-all book unrelated to the Maurizi case. “Many years ago, US Figure Skating learned that I was writing a tell-all book for reasons unrelated to the topic,” Jackson told ABC News in an email. “Immediately, USFS threatened to sue me for a number of reasons … USFS did not sue me. This was not only because everything in my book was truthful and could be proven, but also because I did not breach any confidences I held having served as Ethics chair. Having avoided the legal wrath of US Figure Skating, I’m not about to violate those confidences now.”

For his part, Disbrow told the Times back in 1999 that the claim’s merits were not judged. ''The whole process is that you try to do things that are timely,'' Disbrow told the Times. ''It's not an issue of guilt on anybody's part. I'm not saying 'right or wrong' on anybody's part. The fact is, this thing is 14 years old.''

James, who still acts as legal counsel to U.S. Figure Skating, referred a request for comment to the association’s spokesperson, who released a statement refuting Hazen’s accussations.

“The characterization that U.S. Figure Skating or its outside counsel attempted to subvert the grievance process or intimidate Mr. Hazen is simply not true,” the statement reads. “Mr. Hazen was excused from serving as Grievance Committee Chair on this specific matter because of internet communications he made regarding the case before the grievance had even been filed. Mr. Hazen was requested to take no action in regard to the grievance. U.S. Figure Skating believes that the grievance was handled properly according to the organization’s rules.”

A U.S. Figure Skating spokesperson told ABC News she couldn’t speak to the thoroughness of the association’s review of Maurizi’s claims.

“It was so long ago,” she said.


An additional complaint filed by Maurizi with the Professional Skaters Association, which trains and credentials coaches, didn’t fare much better. In October of 1999, CBS News reported that the three-person committee examining Maurizi’s claims “unanimously found no violation of the ethics standards of the organization.”

PSA president Jimmie Santee defended his organization’s handling of the claims but told ABC News he would be reviewing their policies.

“What we would look at now is totally different from where we were at 20 years ago,” Santee said. “We are going to always review our policies and make sure we’re doing our best every time. We care about what happens to these kids.”

Both Maurizi and Callaghan continued coaching. Maurizi, now 55, still trains top skaters. He recently returned from the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, where he coached an Olympic qualifier from Switzerland. Callaghan, meanwhile, now 72, appears to have faded from the limelight. He told ABC News he has retired to Florida but still coaches a few times per week.

Until Friday, Callaghan had been publicly listed as the chief operating officer of Champions of America, a skating clinic owned by his former student Todd Eldredge, a three-time Olympian and former world champion.

Callaghan would not confirm his employment, but the company’s website had advertised private skating lessons — $57 for one half hour — with Callaghan alongside his phone number and email address. A brochure for Todd Eldredge’s Champions of America even sold lessons on the promise of Callaghan’s glory days.

His credentials are impressive: “World & Olympic Champion Coach; PSA Coach of the Year; Level 10 Ranking Coach,” the brochure read. “A Level 10 Ranking is the highest ranking given by the PSA for elite coaches who have multiple World or Olympic Champions in any figure skating discipline.”

With coach Richard Callaghan at his side, American figure skater Todd Eldredge hangs his head as he waits for his scores following the finals of the mens figure skating competition at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan. KRT/Newscom

A list of former students, all national or world champions, included some of the sport’s biggest stars: Todd Eldridge, Tara Lipinski, Nicole Bobek.

Eldredge declined to comment on Callaghan’s suspension but told ABC News that Callaghan was no longer an employee of the company. On Friday afternoon, after ABC News broke the news of Callaghan’s suspension, pages bearing his name and photograph appeared to have been taken down. (Tara Lipinski did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.)

Next steps are uncertain. A spokesperson for the U.S. Center for SafeSport told ABC News the organization does not comment on active matters, but said in cases involving abuse of minors, the organization always reports the matter to law enforcement.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, a Democrat from New Hampshire who has been pushing for the creation of a committee to investigate the USOC, said this case offers more evidence of the need for increased oversight.

“Glad to see some form of accountability in response to these heinous allegations, but it’s unconscionable that it took 2 decades,” she tweeted. “Why did it take so long? This is why we need a special committee to investigate USOC.”

But as sports columnist Christine Brennan notes, the damage might have already been done.

“It’s good to see USFS act now after SafeSport’s suspension of Callaghan,” she said. “But you have to wonder: how many dozens of boys and young men did Callaghan interact with over the past two decades? That’s incredibly troubling."

Much worse - how many more Callaghans were / are still out there destroying childhoods? Without a full inquiry we will never, ever know.

8 CSA Stories - The Last 2 Are Quite Disturbing on Today's Global PnP List

Tooba Yahya, mother in Shafia family murder case, has permanent Canadian resident status revoked

Woman is serving life in prison for 1st-degree murder of 3 daughters and her husband's 1st wife in what may have been conceived as honour killings
CBC News

Tooba Yahya is serving her life sentence at Quebec's Joliette prison. (Canadian Press)

The permanent resident status of Tooba Yahya, the Montreal woman serving a life sentence for killing her three daughters and her husband's first wife in 2009, has been revoked.

Yahya, husband Mohammad Shafia and their son Hamed were convicted of first-degree murder in the deaths of the women in 2012. The bodies of their daughters Zainab,19, Sahar,17, and Geeti, 13, and that of Rona Amir Mohammad, 52, were found in a car submerged in the Kingston Locks.

The Shafia family and Rona Amir, Mohammad Shafia's first wife in the polygamous marriage, left Afghanistan and came to Canada in 2007.

At a hearing in Montreal Thursday, the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada determined that Yahya will not be permitted to remain in Canada as a permanent resident when she is released from prison. She will not be eligible for parole for at least another 16 years.

The three Shafia daughters and their father's first wife were murdered in 2009 by their parents and eldest brother. (CBC)

She is serving her sentence at Quebec's Joliette Institution for Women and appeared at the hearing by video link. Yayah's lawyer St├ęphane Handfield said his client's life could be in danger if she is returned to Afghanistan and her only recourse will be a humanitarian appeal. 

Considering Justin Trudeau repealed a law introduced by Stephen Harper that would allow immigrant terrorists to lose their Canadian citizenship, it would seem consistent that he would ensure that Tooba remains a Canadian regardless of how many family members she murdered or why. Far-left liberalism somehow makes Canada a better place in Trudeau's eyes.

It's not yet clear whether similar immigration proceedings will be launched in the cases of Hamed and Mohammad Shafia, who are serving their sentences in Ontario.

The three members of the Shafia family appealed their verdict in 2015, arguing that expert testimony on the practice of so-called honour killing presented by the Crown at their trial prejudiced the jury and that Hamed was actually a minor at the time the crime took place.

Documents the family used in 2007 when immigrating to Canada showed Hamed would have been 18 at the time of the killings.

The age argument was rejected by the Ontario Court of Appeal.

Hamed Shafia had asked the Supreme Court of Canada for leave to appeal, arguing new evidence showing he was a youth at the time of the deaths should not have been dismissed. The top court announced in April it would not hear the appeal.

Two PyeongChang Olympians banned for life
over sexual assaults

© Dylan Martinez / Reuters

Two South Korean male mogul skiers, who competed at last month’s PyeongChang Olympics, have received life bans for the sexual assault of female teammates during the Freestyle Skiing World Cup in Akita, Japan.

Choi Jae-woo, 24, and Kim Ji-hyun, 23, have been accused of “physically and sexually abusing female athletes” and will be prohibited from registering as skiers at the Korea Ski Association (KSA), a spokesman said.

Their exclusion from the association will also mean that they are banned from taking part in any international and home competitions.

"We decided to ban Choi and Kim permanently," the KSA spokesman said, adding that the incident occurred during a drinking session in a hotel, when the skiers invited their female counterparts to join them in their room. After their proposal was rejected, the two man allegedly sexually assaulted the girls, who made their complaint public upon their arrival home.

Choi, who is ranked sixth in the moguls FIS World Cup standings, is one of the most recognizable skiers in South Korea. He reached the men’s moguls final at the home games in PyeongChang, but was eliminated from medal contention after failing to finish his second run.

Kim, who also represented South Korea in PyeongChang, failed to get through the qualifying races.

In one of his interviews at that time, Choi said he was planning to take part in the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, which will now be impossible due to his ban.

Dubai Police to use new methods to question
children in abuse cases

Children will be questioned in hotels, play areas and public parks

Image Credit: Dubai police
Gulf News
Ali Al Shouk, Staff Reporter

Dubai: New techniques to question child victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse have been introduced by Dubai Police.

Based on the directives of Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, children in domestic violence, sexual harassment, abuse and violence cases need not go to the police station for giving statements. The child will be taken to a hotel, a play area or a public park for questioning.

Based on the principle that children may not fully understand what is happening with them, Dubai Police have ordered added protection for children under the age of 16 in domestic violence, sexual harassment, abuse and violence cases.

Many children are afraid to go to a police station.
Sometimes, families refuse to bring the child to the police station.
We will also use electronic devices to let the child speak without fear.”

 - Brig Ahmad Bin Galita | Director of Al Rafa police station

Brigadier Ahmad Bin Galita, director of Al Rafa police station, said the initiative is part of the Emirati Children’s Day which was celebrated across the country on Thursday.

“It is a creative idea to question children involved in such cases outside police station. Parents now will bring their child to different places like hotels, play areas or public parks,” Brigadier Bin Galita said.

The new spots will be provided with electronic devices and themes to make the child talk freely without fear.

“We will take the child to different places to break the ice as many children are afraid when they go to a police station. Sometimes, families themselves refuse to bring the child to the police station. We will use electronic devices to let the child speak without fear.”

Specialised officers will be part of the initiative after training them in new techniques and styles to deal with child victims in criminal cases.

In the past, police used to provide a special room to question children inside police stations.

“The child’s behaviour should be understood in relationship with the environment and the officers who are questioning the child. Through play, the officer will try to help the child feel a bond with the former.”

When there is a case of child sexual abuse, children may be the sole witnesses and children’s experience and knowledge are limited. Children may show signs of shame, fear, anxiety and embarrassment, Brig Bin Galita added.

“In order to understand the feelings of a young child, there should be special environmental influences during questioning.”

He said a child who is subjected to sexual abuse or violence is first taken to a hospital and the doctor may question the child and then prepare a report.

The younger the child, the lesser he or she will remember.

“If the child is interviewed carefully, a child witness can be competent to provide testimony.”

Dubai Police said the initiative also complements UAE Vision 2021 and Centennial 2071.

Her Highness Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, said earlier that children are the true wealth of a society, and the UAE and its wise leadership give them all necessary care and attention.

The day was launched by Shaikha Fatima and will be marked annually on March 15.

The approval of Emirati Children’s Day coincides with the date on which the Wudeema law was issued [March 15, 2016], she said. Emirati Children’s Day was approved during a recent Ministerial Development Council meeting chaired by Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.

Sacked Cardiff mosque worker made fake
child abuse claims

Javed Javed posted several lies about worshippers from his former mosque

A sacked Cardiff mosque treasurer set up a website to falsely accuse fellow worshippers of being paedophiles.

Javed Javed, 65, had to leave his post at the Madina Mosque after a row with members, Cardiff Crown Court heard. He then used its web page to make the derogatory claims about four men before setting up his own website.

Javed, of Cardiff, admitted breaching a restraining order banning him from making the posts and was given an eight-month suspended sentence.

He was given the restraining order in January 2017 but carried on regardless and accused the mosque of harbouring sex offenders.

Prosecutor Peter Donnison told the court: "He said members were paedophiles and involved in child sex offences."

"He also posted grossly offensive images, including pictures of pigs and alcohol alongside members of the community. The victims found the images disturbing and said they were disgusted."

'Dignity and restraint'

On Thursday, Javed admitted six counts of acting in breach of a restraining order.

One of his victims told the court: "I am concerned about going out in public because I'm aware people may have seen the website and believed his lies."

Neil Treharne, defending, said: "He apologises for the upset he has caused. He will not be posting such things again." He told the judge Javed was "broke" having recently been made homeless and was "extremely ill" after suffering kidney failure and a stroke.

Judge Jeremy Jenkins QC said: "Each of these gentlemen acted with dignity and restraint despite the fact they must have been hurt by the things you posted."

As well as his sentence, which was suspended for 18 months, Javed was ordered to pay a £140 surcharge.

Married teacher, 38, on trial for sexual activity with an underage girl ‘baffled' by emojis
By Stewart Paterson For Mailonline

Gareth Parry, 38, told the Newcastle Crown Court that he had no idea of the meaning behind smiley and winky faces included in some messages. The teacher, accused of abusing a young girl, claimed he was baffled by emojis she sent him.   

Appearing at Newcastle Crown Court Parry, who the court heard has a PHD degree, was accused of 'playing hard to get'. The former teacher also claims he failed to notice love hearts and kisses in other messages.

Prosecutor Christine Egerton spent two hours cross examining Parry over the messages, which he admitted were 'inappropriate'.

Parry, a former music teacher at Egglescliffe School, admitted talking to the underage girl about underwear, being in bed and Valentine's Day.

But he denied six charges of sexual activity with a child.

However, Miss Egerton told jurors Parry been 'caught out' by the exchange. 'You were playing hard to get,' she told the defendant. 'You were enjoying what was happening and were prompting [the exchange]. You were loving it, weren't you?'

Parry denied that he was, telling jurors he didn't have relations with the girl. He added: 'I didn't fancy her.' 

On Tuesday, Newcastle Crown Court heard Caroline Mead, the Cleveland Police officer leading the investigation, didn't check out one of Parry's alibis - citing an 'oversight' as the reason. 

But on the seventh day of the trial, the Crown pushed Parry on the messages, which Miss Egerton claimed gave him a 'thrill'. 

He admitted there were points during the messages - in which he continued to message her after she called him 'sexy' and 'babe' and he accepted he should have probably have stopped. 

Miss Egerton questioned why he didn't, adding: 'The truth is you wanted that to continue, didn't you.'

Parry, of Stonebridge Crescent, Ingleby Barwick, replied that he did not. 

The trial continues.  

Man jailed for rape, sexual assault of young girl

A 44 year-old man has been sentenced to 16 years imprisonment after being found guilty of raping, sexually assaulting and taking indecent images of a young girl.

Karl Raine, formerly of Culey Close, King’s Lynn, was found guilty of one count of rape, two sexual assaults and three counts of making and taking indecent images following a four week trial at Norwich Crown Court.

Raine was originally convicted of the offences in September 2016 and sentenced to 18 years imprisonment. However, following an appeal his conviction was quashed after a procedural irregularity. Raine was ordered to face a retrial for the offence which began on 19th February 2018.

Raine pleaded not guilty, however a jury found him guilty of all seven counts.

After receiving intelligence from the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP), part of the National Crime Agency (NCA), a warrant was carried out on 24th April 2014 at his address by members of Norfolk Constabulary's Safeguarding Children Online Team (SCOLT).

This warrant instigated a detailed investigation where Raine was further arrested on 28th June 2014 on suspicion of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and again on 21st July 2014 on suspicion of rape of a female under 13.

A second referral to the SCOLT prompted another search of Raine's property on 12th January 2016. When police arrived Raine threatened officers with what was later identified as an imitation firearm. He denied the offence but was later found guilty of causing fear or provocation of violence with an imitation firearm.

Investigating Officer, Detective Sergeant Ngaire Alexander, said: "Today’s sentencing marks the end of what has been a long and difficult investigation. The impact of this case on the victim and the victim’s family has been life changing, and the courage that they have all shown throughout is commendable. 

"Raine has shown himself to be a manipulative and calculating individual and I am pleased the jury has, for a second time, come to the unanimous decision that he is guilty of sexual crimes against children"

"Norfolk Constabulary remains dedicated to safeguarding children and identifying those that offend against them.  I urge anyone who has been victim of sexual abuse, past or present to come forward in the faith that we will do all we can to bring those responsible to justice”

Norfolk Constabulary set up the Safeguarding Children Online Team (SCOLT) in 2014 in a bid to investigate on-line grooming and possession and distribution of illegal images.

The team aim to identify victims who are being or have been abused and work with agencies to put safeguarding measures in place. For more information on the SCOLT visit Norfolk Constabulary's website at: http://www.norfolk.police.uk/.

ATC hands 2nd life sentence to man in Kasur, Pakistan
child abuse case
Rana Bilal

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Lahore on Thursday sentenced a man to life imprisonment after finding him guilty in the Kasur child abuse scandal.

ATC judge Chaudhry Muhammad Ilyas announced the verdict against Haseem Amir in one of the 29 cases police had registered since the child abuse ring was uncovered in 2015.

Other suspects, including Aleem Asif, Naseem Shahzad and Maqsood Sindhi, were acquitted by the court over lack of evidence.

Amir was punished in FIR number 248/15 registered by Ganda Singhwala police. He has already been sentenced to life in prison in at least two other cases after the prosecution accused Amir and others of sexually assaulting young boys and filming the act to blackmail their families.

In Hussain Khanwala village in Kasur, videos were made of at least 280 children being sexually abused by a gang who later blackmailed their parents by threatening to leak the videos and received money from them.

The police, who had conspicuously failed to act despite pleas from some parents, eventually made dozens of arrests after clashes between relatives and authorities brought the issue into the media spotlight.

In March 2016, the Senate also passed a bill that criminalised sexual assault against minors, child pornography and trafficking for the first time — previously only the acts of rape and sodomy were punishable by law.

Police had registered a total of 34 cases regarding the Kasur child abuse scandal. However, a joint investigation team had dismissed five cases as fake.

Last month, the ATC had awarded life sentence to three people, including Amir, that were nominated in one of the cases regarding the scandal. The three convicts were also slapped with a fine of Rs500,000 each.

Kasur has been in the limelight for recurring cases of child abuse in the area. Earlier in February, an ATC had awarded death sentence to the rapist and murderer of six-year-old Zainab in a high profile case that had sparked anger across the country with #JusticeForZainab becoming a rallying cry for an end to violence against children.

17 years to convict Australian man for child
sexual abuse: but not one night in jail

Dhanya Rajendran, Geetika Mantri

He is a man who committed horrific crimes against children in two Indian states. Paul Henry Dean, an Australian national, who has sexually abused children over decades in Visakhapatnam as well as Puri, Odisha, was held guilty by a Railway Court in Visakhapatnam on February 21.

The first travesty of justice happened when the case against him in Andhra Pradesh, which was registered in 2001 dragged on for 17 long years.

The police took a long time to identify the victims. It took so long that finally only four out of 12 victims were ready to come and depose before the magistrate.

Clearly, justice was delayed. But was there any justice at all?

TNM has learnt of a bigger travesty. This man, who has been convicted of child sexual abuse, that too of a disabled boy, was given bail on the same day that he was convicted. “He was convicted on February 21, he got bail the same day from the Railway court,” Inspector from the II town (MR Peta) police station confirmed to TNM.

Take time to digest that: Paul Dean who was found guilty under relevant sections of the Passport Act, Foreigners Act, section 377 (unnatural sex) and 292 (2) (A) (exposing obscenity) of IPC, was awarded just three years imprisonment – and did not spend a single night in jail.

Special needs victim suicides

In the 1980s, one of Paul Dean's youngest victims in Titilagarh, Orissa was a hearing and speech impaired boy called Anil Kumar. The teenager used crude sign language to raise the alarm that he too was being abused. But no action was taken, and Anil Kumar hanged himself in July 1985. After the boy's suicide, Paul Dean was forced to move on to Andhra Pradesh.

Here, too, he continued to sexually abuse young boys left in his charge. (A timeline can be found towards the end of the story).

Vidya Reddy of Tulir, a Chennai-based NGO working against child sexual abuse, has been following the case for several years now. She says, Paul Dean getting bail is a travesty of justice.

“Besides sexually abusing children, he has taken many avatars. He has performed surgeries he had no authority to do, perhaps blinding people and hacking their limbs in the process!” she exclaims.

She adds that Paul has not only fled Australia under an Interpol notice, his case has also been discussed in the Australian Parliament: The government had wondered what it could do to prevent its citizens from going abroad and “behaving in such an abominable way.”

Paul Dean in the centre

"When do you deny bail?” Vidya questions, “You deny bail when there's a risk the person may take flight. This man has been known to have jumped – literally and figuratively – at the opportunity in the past. He literally jumped off a train once to avoid arrest. He has abused the most vulnerable of children. And they have granted THIS man bail?”

Swagata Raha, a legal researcher at the Centre for Child and the Law in Bengaluru, says that this case is representative of the failure of the criminal justice system. “The trial was long, drawn out to almost two decades. It is a letdown to survivors who are currently fighting also – is this the kind of verdict they should look forward to?" she asks.

Several people also say that the only reason this case even got to the stage of conviction was because of the interest taken by Special Public Prosecutor Botcha Prameela. Without her constant follow up, Paul Dean wouldn’t even have a ‘guilty’ tag against his name.

What should India do?

Between 2007 and 2009 Australia sent multiple requests to India to investigate whether Paul Dean is the same man who had a passport in the name of Alan Herbert Rose back in 1976.  The Australian Police told the Australian Parliament that India had not replied to even one request. A Child Rights organisation called ChildWise in 2009 requested the Australian government to extradite Paul Dean as they believed the ‘only way to bring him to justice is to prosecute him for these crimes in Australia'.

Even if Australia wants to try him for any cases pending there, the Indian authorities first need to dispose off with the cases here. The case in Puri has been pending for almost a decade. Will Odisha government ensure speedy trial, or will we simply be allowing Paul Dean to stay on in our country and do what he wishes?

It was mainly based on the testimony of a visually impaired survivor that Paul was convicted in the Vishkapatnam case. The punishment under section 377 of the IPC is 10 years. Paul not only got away with three, but seems to be out and about now, not sparing a thought for acts which have destroyed childhoods, including that of the one person who persisted through this 17-year-long trial.

Who is Paul Dean?

1. He disappeared from Australia, along with $100,000 from the travel company he was chairing, in 1976. He resurfaced in south India, used fake passports and other such documents to move from place to place and manipulate people.

2. From 1980s to 2000s, he masqueraded as a Catholic missionary, a professor, a doctor and more, took on many titles such as “thatha” (grandfather) and used these appearances to win people over. He worked in a number of charitable organisations like New Hope and the Mary Ellen Gerber Foundation Trust.

3. He started performing surgeries – cataract and even limb amputations – even though he had no qualifications to be a doctor or a surgeon.

4. After one of his victims in Puri committed suicide, he was forced to move to Andhra Pradesh.

5. Showing his benevolent mask to the world, he has used his power to abuse the most disadvantaged and vulnerable children in Visakhapatnam. These children included orphans, those from poor families, kids who had visual, hearing or speech disabilities, those afflicted with leprosy and more.

6. He went back to Odisha. On November 5, 2008, Mary Ellen of the Mary Ellen Gerber Foundation, complained to the Puri police that Paul Dean had been abusing boys at the MEG village. This case is still pending.

It's time for India's Mickey Mouse justice system to join the 21st century.