Tourist Sentenced For Molesting Over 50 Ugandan Girls

Not one or two, but more than 50 girls below 10 years were sexually abused by a tourist, who also took their photographs, recorded them on video and uploaded the image on the internet.

Emin Baro, 53, a teacher from Turkey, was on Monday sentenced to two years in jail or a fine of $2,401.92 by the Grade One Magistrate Court in Nakawa.

Baro, who entered the country as a tourist six years ago, pleaded guilty to computer misuse and possessing child pornographic materials.

Grade One Magistrate Rosemary Bareebe in her judgement said: “You have pleaded guilty and for this reason I will be lenient. The activity you involved in is condemned in our society and it is not acceptable.’’

Baro, however, failed to pay the fine and was taken to Luzira Maximum Security Prison to serve his sentence.
The convict, who abused girls in Masaka, Kampala and Jinja districts, often paid between Shs2,000 and Shs5,000 to each girl.

Taking advantage
Baro, it is alleged, was selling the material to different websites but because he was quick to plead guilty, prosecution was not able to get details of his business.

Although human rights activists welcomed the conviction, they were unhappy about the length of the sentence, saying that it is not deterrent enough.

African Network for the Prevention and Protection against Child Abuse and Neglect, Uganda Programme Manager Anslem Wandega said the sentence would have extended to at least 10 years.

“I am not happy with the sentence but I am glad he was convicted before the child pornography could reach another level,” Mr Wandega said yesterday.

After carrying out a study in Jinja District, ANPPCAN found out that there are many tourists engaged in child pornography, especially near beaches.

Police spokesperson Asuman Mugenyi, who also handles the child protection unit, said they wanted to prefer charges of aggravated defilement, but had not arrested the Turk in action.

Mr Haruna Mawa, a child rights activist, said many child abusers in the country take advantage of the economic vulnerability of their victims.

According to the police file, Baro holds two passports of Macedonia and New Zealand.

He admitted to have taken the photographs with plans to post them on his computer.

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