100+ arrested in Brazil sting;
Sentence increased from 10 to 25 years for Liberian rapist;
Dramatic rise in grooming in UK;
Raping your wife is OK in Canada;
Wrist slap for Aussie man who raped 4 y/o in the '70s;
Football CSA inquiry widens;
Yukon man on trial for CSA of 11 girls under 14 y/o
‘Drugged & tortured:’ Mental health center employees arrested over extreme child abuse
Brazilian police claim to have arrested more than 100 people who’re accused of being part of a massive paedophile ring.
The nationwide operation saw people held in 24 of the country’s 26 states, and in the capital Brasilia.
Those arrested are said to have produced or distributed pornographic material of children and teenagers over the internet.
They’re said to include former policemen, civil servants and people involved with football youth clubs.
Police have reportedly found more than 150,000 files with suspicious images, including pictures of babies and young children being abused.
The raids follow a six-month investigation which involved more than 1,000 agents. Brazil’s Justice Minister Torquato Jardim said it was carried out with the help of the United States embassy, and it’s understood that European immigration officials were also associated with the operation.
Monrovia - Despite the Liberian Senate making rape bailable, the Solicitor General (SG) of Liberia has said that the Ministry of Justice remains unwavering in prosecuting all rape and sexual exploitation cases.
By Bettie K. Johnson Mbayo
SG Betty Lamin-Blamo said the Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) unit within the Ministry is fully ready to tackle such cases. She disclosed that the only court in the country to prosecute sexual abuse cases is also impeding the prosecution of rape cases.
Cllr. Blamo further stated that the unit is working with stakeholders including the Gender, Children and Social Protection Ministry and AFELL to plead with the Members of the 54th Legislature specifically the House of Representatives to not concur with the Senate’s amendment of the rape law.
The statement of Cllr. Betty followed the Supreme Court's recent confirmation of the guilty verdict of a 20-year-old man, who raped a 10-year-old girl in 2011.
James Marfalon was found guilty and sentenced to 10 years by the Criminal Court “’E.” Following an appeal, which was filed to the Supreme Court, the sentence was extended to 25 years.
The nation's highest court agreed that Marfalon committed the act based on the facts and supporting evidence adduced during the trial of the case.
“We hereby affirm and confirm the final judgment of the trial court but with the modification that the sentence of ten (10) years imprisonment imposed is increased to 25 years, commencing as the date of his confinement, with the possibility of parole after 11 years of imprisonment,” the Court said
The victim testified that on a Friday, February 18, 2011, that she, her brother and the defendant (Marfalon) were watching movies when her brother had to leave because he had been called by his another friend, leaving she and the defendant in the room.
The victim says while watching movies the generator went off and the defendant said he was going to put it back on but it did not come on.
“I tried leaving because the place was dark but when I tried coming out, he held my mouth and carried me inside and started dong rude-rude (sex) thing to me,” the little girl said.
In a statement, which her brother confirmed, it added that he was prevented from re-entering the room, “Because he told me that my sister had left”.
The victim’s step father also testified that he and his wife were washing their children’s clothes when his wife saw blood stains on the victim’s trousers.
“My wife noticed blood on the trousers of our daughter, and she called my attention, saying that she didn’t know our daughter had started menstruating,” the girl's father said.
He added that his wife and her sister took the victim to a local clinic where she explained that she had been abused by the defendant.
“The midwife told us that our daughter was menstruating but she was tampered with.”
Defendant Marfalon taking the stand said he was a notorious criminal in the community and that he had been incarcerated on several occasions for the commission of theft and criminal mischief. But didn’t commit the crime of rape as was alleged in the indictment.
The court record shows that the defendant lied when he testified that he rented his generator to a friend a night before the incident. A testimony, which was rebutted by the friend he named that the generator was rented to.
The court in its opinion said the court considers the child’s age and maturity, nature and duration of the abuse, relationship of the child to the offender, the coherence of the statement by the victim and others. At the time of the incident the defendant was 10 and is now 16 or 17 years.
The trial judge committed no error in overruling the defendant's question regarding the inclusion of additional witness’s statements.
“We hold that the appellant (Marfalon) failure to prove his alibi in the face of the state incriminating evidence placing him at the scene and the time of the rape, said failure nullifies, dissolves and abolished all presumptions of innocence in his favor and establishes a string inference of his guilt for the commission of the heinous crime of rape.”
Grooming offences against children have risen an alarming 64 per cent across England and Wales in just one year, new statistics show.
Home Office figures issued by the Office for National Statistics showed there were 1,771 grooming offences recorded in the year to June, up from 1,080 in the previous year. Sexual Grooming was one of the most-increased recorded offences over that period.
In the East of England, 217 grooming offences were recorded in the year to June this year, up from 186 in 2015-16.
From April this year a new offence making it illegal to send a sexual message to a child came into force after a two-year delay, following the NSPCC’s Flaw in the Law campaign.
The recorded grooming offences also include the crime of Meeting After Grooming, which former England Footballer Adam Johnson was convicted of after meeting a 15-year-old fan, with whom he had exchanged sexual messages on WhatsApp.
NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “This is an enormous rise in recorded grooming offences over such a short period, and the fact that records of grooming offences have increased substantially more than most other crimes shows the need for urgent action.
“More young people are speaking up about sexual grooming, and it’s vital that now more than ever police are given the training and the resources to tackle this issue.
"Groomers need to be stopped before they go to meet their victim, and following the NSPCC’s Flaw in the Law campaign police now have the tools they need to intervene before abuse escalates.
“We all have a part to play in keeping children safe online. The NSPCC’s Net Aware website has useful tools for parents about popular new websites, how to set up privacy controls and how to talk to children about online safety.”
Young people affected by grooming can contact Childline on 0800 11 11.
An Ottawa man has been found not guilty of sexually assaulting his wife because of his honest belief that he had the right to have intercourse with her whenever he wanted.
In a written ruling, Ontario Superior Court Justice Robert Smith said the Crown failed to prove that the accused had formed the required criminal intent — mens rea — to sexually assault his wife in 2002.
“I find that the accused probably had sex with his wife on many occasions without her specific consent, as both he and she believed that he had the right to do so,” Smith said.
However, the judge ruled the man was not guilty of sexual assault because the Crown had failed to establish that he knew his behaviour was, in fact, criminal.
The decision, issued earlier this week, followed a five-day trial in June.
The man was part of an arranged marriage in Gaza. His wife, a Palestinian who grew up in Kuwait, lived in Ottawa and the family settled in this city.
She testified that during their marriage, she considered it her obligation to have sex with her husband. Often, she told court, she did not consent, but they both believed it was his right.
This is, of course, Islamic doctrine, and it's acceptance puts Islamic Law above Canadian Law.
The couple separated in January 2013, but they had difficultly making child arrangements work.
Court heard that it was during a dispute over child access — after speaking to a police officer — that the woman came to understand she had the right to refuse sexual relations with her husband. She subsequently complained to Ottawa police about a 2002 incident.
The husband denied ever having sexual relations with his wife without her consent, and specifically denied the incident that led to the charges.
His wife alleged that, in 2002, he grabbed her by the wrist, pulled her onto the couch, pulled down her pants and had sex with her even though she asked him three times to stop. The judge said she was a credible witness who gave straightforward answers.
Court heard that at the time, in 2002, the husband had undergone a hair transplant. His doctor, he testified, had told him to abstain from sex for two weeks after the surgical procedure. He told court the alleged incident could not have happened because he had followed that advice.
“The accused did not call any medical evidence to show this was standard medical practice,” the judge said, “and I find his evidence in this regard does not accord with common sense to a reasonably informed person.”
Smith said the man was argumentative and evasive as a witness, and he rejected his account as not believable. Nevertheless, the judge said he could not find him guilty of a crime.
“Marriage is not a shield for sexual assault,” Smith wrote in his decision. “However, the issue in this trial is whether, considering the whole of the evidence, the Crown has proven the allegations beyond a reasonable doubt.”
The man’s defence lawyer, Sean May, said the timing of the charges — they came to light during a combative phase in the relationship — also raised doubt in the case.
Carrolyn Johnston, acting executive director of the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women, called the ruling “disappointing.” She said it highlights persistent myths about sexual assault.
“Any sexual contact without explicit and ongoing consent is sexual assault — regardless of the relationship,” Johnston said. “He may have believed that he had a right to have sex with her as her husband, but Canadian sexual assault law is clear and was amended to include sexual assault against a spouse in 1983.”
The Ottawa coalition, the Sexual Assault Network and the city’s rape crisis centres are now engaged in public education campaigns, she said, to ensure that consent laws are better understood. The province’s revised sex education curriculum, introduced in 2005, teaches students about the importance of consent. Students are first introduced to the concept in Grade 7.
Toronto police say an Ajax, Ont., man facing child porn charges has associated closely with children through volunteer work he’s done for years.
Investigators allege a man placed an ad online looking to “facilitate sexual acts” and chatted with someone to make arrangements to commit sexual acts on a child.
They allege that during these chats, he sent images of child sexual abuse.
Toronto police say the man is facing five child porn charges, including distributing and making child porn, along with a sixth charge of making an arrangement to commit sexual interference.
Toronto police say the man has had access to kids through volunteer work since 2010, but didn’t provide further details.
The Crown prosecutors in a disturbing Yukon child sex abuse case are asking that an “audio-visual exhibit” to be presented as part of the offender’s sentencing hearing be sealed from the public.
Crown prosecutor Noel Sinclair, accompanied by fellow Crown attorney Susan Bogle, made the application in Whitehorse court Oct. 19.
The application is related to a case where, on Oct. 5, a man pleaded guilty to 19 charges of child sexual abuse, including nine charges of sexual interference, eight charges of producing child pornography and two counts of voyeurism. The 11 victims of his crimes, which he committed between January 2008 and July 2013, were all girls under 14 years old.
The man cannot be named in order to protect the identity of his victims.
“I make this application with a heavy heart,” Sinclair said in court Oct. 19, describing the exhibit as “profoundly disturbing and upsetting” and “the kinds of thing the court cannot unsee.”
However, Sinclair said he thought it was necessary for the presiding judge on the case, Justice Ron Veale, to view the exhibit in order to “understand the extreme gravity” of the offences and factor them appropriately into the man’s sentencing.
Sinclair proposed Veale view the exhibit in his private chambers, where no one else would be exposed to its contents. He added that the victims’ families have expressed concerns about keeping the victims anonymous and about allowing the man to view the contents again, should they be displayed in open court.
The Crown is also asking for two indictments — one containing the victims’ initials, and another with their full names — to be sealed from the public as well. An anonymized version has been made and will continue to be available for public access.
The man’s lawyer, Vincent Larochelle, was not present in court for the application but had said in an earlier proceeding that he would not oppose it.
Veale will deliver a written decision on the application. The man is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 29, 2018.