Monday, March 21, 2011

British paedophile duo arrested

Mumbai, March 21, 2011

Two British nationals, convicted on charges of sexual abuse of minor boys living in shelters run by them in Mumbai, were arrested on Monday, three days after the Supreme Court overturned their acquittal by the Bombay High Court.

Duncan Grant, 67, and Allan Waters, 63, were arrested from Mahatma Phule Nagar slum in Cuff Parade of South Mumbai, senior Inspector at Colaba police station Vinod Sawant said.

The duo, accused of sexually abusing minor boys living in shelters run by them, would be produced before a sessions court, he said.

Besides ordering the duo to serve their remaining jail terms, the Supreme Court had on Friday also directed recovery of damages and fines imposed on them by a sessions court on March 18, 2006.

The trial court had ordered the Britishers to pay a compensation of 20,000 UK pounds each while also imposing a fine of Rs 15,000 on William D'souza, the Indian manager at the shelters-for-homeless run by the convicts at three places in Mumbai.

Waters and Grant were sentenced to six years each. While Waters has undergone five years imprisonment, Grant has served three years and two months. D'Souza has served a month longer in jail than the term of three years imposed upon him.

The apex court had last Friday restored the conviction on appeals by civil society Childline India Foundation and Maharashtra government, challenging the order of Bombay High Court which had freed them in July 2008.

"Children are the greatest gift to humanity. The sexual abuse of children is one of the most heinous crimes. It is an appalling violation of their trust, an ugly breach of our commitment to protect the innocent," the apex court had observed while restoring their said while restoring the conviction.

A case against the trio was registered in November 2001 on the intervention of the civil society on the basis of statements of the two victims at the Anchorage Shelter Home in Colaba run by the Britishers.

However, the duo had left the country when the case was registered against them. While Waters was arrested in USA in pursuance of an Interpol notice against him and brought to India, Grant surrendered before an Indian court on his own in 2002.

The High Court had set aside their conviction imposed by the sessions court in 2006, saying none of the other children living in the shelter Anchorage, run by the two, had corroborated the two victims' depositions of their sexual abuse.

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