Court to hear child porn case May 30

PHILIPSBURG–On May 30 the Court of First Instance will be handling the case of a 59-year-old suspect charged with the possession of child pornography. The man of Scottish descent is also suspected of having committed lewd acts with his six-year-old daughter and with two other minor girls ages 12-16 years. C.K. will also be confronted with the possession of 197 grams of cocaine, 36 Molotov cocktails and seven boxes with stolen jewellery.

The Prosecutor said Wednesday that many data carriers with child porn material displaying underage children of different ages had been confiscated. He said many data carriers still needed to be analysed for the presence of forbidden items. Nevertheless, the Prosecutor said the investigations to date already displayed a “rather shocking image.”
The suspect denied the charges, which he said had come as a shock. “I never engaged in sex with minors. I am being wrongly accused,” he told the Court. He admitted to the possession of cocaine, but said the charges of weaponry were “ridiculous.”
The Prosecutor said a psychologist and a psychiatrist had already filed reports about the suspect’s state of mind, but said a psychiatrist would be assigned to draft an additional report.

Attorney-at-law Shaira Bommel requested that the Court suspend her client’s pre-trial detention. She said she did not have the full case file available and had not been able to examine all imagery.
She said her client had been confronted with “rather serious” allegations and called on the Court to hear the young victims by a youth psychologist or a vice squad detective.
She said that at the current stage of the investigation images of a lewd nature had been found on only one mobile phone, which she claimed had only been purchased after Hurricane Irma in September 2017.

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The suspect is charged with the possession of child pornography between December 2015 and December 2017, but according to the defence the material could also have belonged to one of her client’s employees, as C.K. held office at his home.
However, the Prosecutor said the camera set-up, which was aimed at the bed in the defendant’s bedroom, was rather “peculiar.”

He vehemently opposed the suspect’s release from detention. “Suspension? Absolutely not,” the Prosecutor resolutely said in response to the lawyer’s request.
He was not against the questioning of the three young victims, but recommended that this be done only once and towards the end of the investigations in case it was deemed absolutely necessary, to protect the young victims as much as possible.

According to the Prosecutor, C.K. had confessed on December 29, 2017, to having sent videos to some of his friends. One of the videos shows a man with an amputated leg. This proves the defendant, whose left leg is amputated, had spread material of a pornographic nature, the Prosecutor claimed. The Prosecutor’s Office is also of the opinion that the suspect has produced child porn.

“All facts together provide a shocking picture of the defendant,” the Prosecutor said in calling for a personality analysis of the suspect; for instance, regarding possible dangers of repeat offending.
Bommel informed the Court that her client is also confronted with a civil case and is not allowed any contact with his young daughter.
The Judge denied the request to suspend the suspect’s pre-trial detention, as his personal interests do not weigh up against the serious allegations brought against him.
The Judge said he would grant most of the other requests for the defence, because the defendant and his legal representative are confronted with very serious charges which, when found proven, merit long-term imprisonment.

The Judge said he would put the request for questioning of the youngest victim on hold to obtain the Court of Guardianship’s advice on this matter. The two older victims may be heard towards the end of the investigation.
The requests to hear other witnesses were also granted, as well as the possibility to study video material and to get an expert in voice recognition involved.

Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/74899-court-to-hear-child-porn-case-may-30

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