British citizen convicted on Child Sexual Abuse
Kathmandu–Ian Robert Cole, a British citizen arrested on January 19, 2019, has been convicted on charges of child sexual abuse.
The Kathmandu District Court on Wednesday convicted Cole and sentenced him to three years imprisonment and Rs 30,000 fines.
A single bench of Judge Prakash Dhungana of the Kathmandu District Court charged Cole and sentenced him to three years in jail and to compensate Rs 20,000 each to the victims.
Cole has been convicted in accordance with Article 225 of the Criminal Code, 2017 which talks about pedophilia.
Abuse or Misconduct?
The article 225 of the Criminal Code, 2017 states that sexual abuse is offensive. Similarly, the article 226 of the Code states that unnatural sex is offensive.
The prosecutor filed a case at Kathmandu District Court against Cole in the allegation of pedophilia with three children demanding a sentence similar to case rape. In article 226 (3) of the code, if anyone is convicted of raping a victim of age between 10 to 14 years, he/she will be sentenced to imprisonment of 18 to 20 years.
However, Kathmandu District Court sentenced Cole three years of jail term convicting him of pedophile terming it as partial fulfillment of the demand. The prosecutor is preparing to file a writ against District Court’s verdict. An official at the Attorney General's Office said that they would go to the high court after receiving the full text of the verdict from the district court.
What had happened?
The CIB arrested a 50-year-old British national along with one Indian and Nepali nationals on the charge of pedophilia and rescued three minors from his clutches from Rabi Bhawan, Kalimati.
A team of plainclothes cops raided a rented apartment in Kalimati, Kathmandu Metropolitan City-13 at around 4:00am and apprehended Ian Robert Cole of the United Kingdom and his accomplice Ajay Poddar from India, in the act of molesting underage Nepali boys.
The British national lured poor and disadvantaged children with money and goods, brought them to his apartment, and preyed on them. He had last arrived in Kathmandu on December 28. It was his 16th visit to Nepal since 2010. One of his fellow citizens, who accompanied Cole, had left Kathmandu for home last week. Cole was arrested for possessing child pornography in the UK in 2016 before release.
Cole also used to visit rural areas in districts around Kathmandu, such as Dhading, and convince parents to send their children with him, by promising the parents a better life for their children.
As per the investigation and according to Cole's confession, his major intention of coming to Nepal was to exploit children for sexual pleasure. According to the investigation, Cole, before entering the country, used to rent apartments in different parts of the Valley. At these apartments, he would sexually exploit children. His target would be children below 18 years of age, who came mostly from impoverished backgrounds, such as street children and children from rural areas.
In an effort to 'groom' them, Cole used to buy expensive clothes, feed them good food and convince them to come with him to his apartment, by promising them a better future. After Cole would be successful in luring the children to his apartment, he would make the children sleep together and then sexually exploit them, according to CIB officials. Cole also used to take children for trips to places like Pokhara and Nuwakot.