PHILIPSBURG–Emmanuel York (49), who was described as a “digital child molester” during his trial at the Court of First Instance in January 2015, was sentenced on appeal Wednesday, to four years.
The Court of First Instance had sentenced him to five years for the sexual abuse of two minor boys.
The former manager at L.B. Scott Sports Auditorium and Community Development Officer maintained his innocence, and his lawyer Brenda Brooks pleaded for his full acquittal during the hearing of the appeal on March 3.
The Court of Appeals found the former president of the St. Maarten National Basketball Association SXMNBA responsible for raping a 15-year-old boy on April 2, 2014.
He had groomed the child on the Internet, using Facebook and persuaded him to meet up for a one-to-one coaching session.
York was also found guilty of involvement in a series of rapes of a 17-year-old boy between August 2013 and February 2014, in which the child was groomed in a similar manner.
The defendant had used the same modus operandi to lure his victims in both cases. He had met them via the Internet and had promised them spots on basketball trips to the United States as part of an exchange programme.
He also would have offered the second victim his assistance in obtaining a Dutch passport and a job with the Coast Guard, using forged documents.
In exchange, the boys were subjected to tests and private one-to-one training sessions, during which they had to run and do other exercises. These late-afternoon sessions were not held at a sports facility, but in “dark and remote” areas such as Mt. Bishop Hill and the hills behind the Vineyard Building, where they were touched, forced into sexual acts and raped. York denied he had ever touched the boys or had any sexual contact with them.
The case started rolling when the mother of one of the victims filed a report with the Police on April 4, 2014.
Acting Solicitor-General Anton van der Schans considered all charges proven, but called for an acquittal where it concerned the exertion of violence in the second case. He recommended the Court to uphold the five-year sentence.
The Court of Appeals, however, slashed one year off the initial punishment, and ordered the confiscation of the defendant’s laptop computer and two mobile phones.
Source: The Daily Herald Child molester gets four years on appeal