Outrage is growing in Germany over the mild punishment handed down to an Afghan refugee who raped a migrant toddler in the asylum home where they both lived
Jama B., 22, showed no remorse as he was sentenced to just two years and four months behind bars on the milder charge of sexual abuse of the four-year-old boy at the centre in Boostedt, Schleswig-Holstein.
The toddler, from Iraq, was lured into a toilet cubicle at the home in March this year. The court heard the Afghani forced his penis into the child’s mouth.
Afterwards the distraught youngster was returned to his father with his trousers down around his ankles.
During the trial Jama B. boasted: “I’m a superstar in Afghanistan, a singer.”
He claimed no-one could prove what was alleged, admitted he drank alcohol before the crime but showed no remorse whatsoever during the proceedings on Thursday last week at the court in Kiel.
A second man, Sohrab S., 29, was alleged to have stood guard outside the toilet during the boy’s ordeal but he was acquitted for lack of evidence.
“The incredible verdict of the prosecutor and the court,” stormed the popular Bild am Sonntag newspaper.
“This is the verdict that shames you all.”
Child protection groups demanded to know why Jama B. was not charged with rape.
Prosecutor Axel Bieler said: “Rape charges are brought only if it was enforced with violence or the threat of violence. We do not assume this was the case.
“Therefore he was indicted on a charge of serious sexual abuse. The penalty doesn’t matter – it is between two and 15 years in jail for rape or for serious sexual abuse.”
Karin Witt, a spokeswoman of the Kiel court Karin Witt, said: “The court found no reasons for an increased penalty, such as for example a criminal record for the accused.
“The fact that he was under the influence of alcohol and the high sensitivity towards detention of the offender were both factors in the sentence.
“He is young, knows no German and has already been attacked in pre-trial detention. The victim has also dealt well with the experience of what happened to him and there are no serious consequences to be expected.”
Judge Stefan Becker refused to comment on the verdict but Peter Boysen, the lawyer who represented the family of the child, said: “it was a one-off act that did not take very long and hopefully will not have harmful long-term effects on the child.
“Therefore there is no reason to complain, even if the sentence could have been maybe half a year longer. I have not therefore advised the parents to appeal against the verdict. He’s better again, the boy, but is still in therapeutic treatment of a child and adolescent psychiatrist.
“The family is glad to be out of the home. Today they live in another home in northern Germany.”
In Germany no verdict is final for around a month after the verdict – a time period in which prosecutors and defence can appeal any court decision. It is unclear whether the prosecution will demand a higher penalty.
But what is certain is that Jama B. will not receive any asylum hearing and will be deported to his homeland after his prison term is served.
Child sex abuse in asylum centres, along with the rape and molestation of women, has been on the increase in Germany over recent months.
Critics have said more needs to be done to protect women and children in the centres where they are housed.