Three suspected cases of sexual crimes committed against minors under investigation

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PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – The Police Force of Sint Maarten KPSM and the Prosecutor’s Office Sint Maarten are handling three cases of suspected sexual crimes committed against minors. Police have made arrests related to all three instances.

In one case, a man of 30-years-old is suspected of impregnating a 13-year-old girl. This same man is also a suspect in another case of statutory rape of another 13-year-old girl.

Sex with a minor (age 12 to 16) carries a maximum sentence of 12 years imprisonment.

Whether the sex is consensual is not relevant since a child of minor age is not (always) deemed able to make well informed and balanced choices about sex. Assuming that someone is over 16 doesn’t exonerate the perpetrator either. Positive knowledge about the victims’ age is not required.

The basic rule is simple: do not have sex with people younger than 16 years old.

It is the adult who should take responsibility and protect the child. The only exception to this rule is when both persons are of similar age and in a similar in their development as a person.

In yet another case, a man in his forties was caught on camera performing a sexual act on a child of six-years-old. In this case, the mother of the child was arrested too for complicity to the act and distributing the video.

Having sex with a person younger than 12 years carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. Rape also carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. Distributing child pornography carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison. Being present at a situation where there are sexual acts with a person younger than 18 years carries a maximum penalty of six years in prison. The maximum sentences in all these instances are raised by a third if the perpetrator is responsible for the child as a caregiver.

KPSM and the Prosecutor’s Office encourage the public to report cases of suspected sexual abuse of minors and general cases to the Police Force of St. Maarten KPSM.