Boys' Home Scandal

By Carl Gilchrist
The Jamaica Observer

July 25, 2008

A pastor of a church in rural Jamaica, who is also a supervisor at a boys home, has been charged with 30 counts of buggery, allegedly committed against boys at the institution.

The accused, who was originally charged with one count of buggery, appeared in the Richmond Resident Magistrate's court on Wednesday.

It was during the proceedings that it was revealed that other incidents had allegedly taken place between the accused and other boys at the institution.

After investigations, the pastor was slapped with 29 additional charges by the St Mary police.

The St Mary police confirmed that a man has been arrested and charged in relation to the allegations of buggery against children at the home but could not provide details.

The police said the accused has been remanded in custody and will return to court next Wednesday, July 30.

When contacted, Rasheda St Juste, communications officer at the Child Development Agency (CDA), which has responsibility for children who are in need of care and protection, said the CDA was aware of the latest charges that have been laid against the supervisor.

St Juste said the supervisor had been under investigation since March 2008 when the CDA reported a case of sexual abuse of a ward of the state to the police.

"The incident, which took place at the facility in February 2008, was reported to us by the victim himself," St Juste said in an e-mail response. "The CDA simultaneously began an investigation into the matter and reported the incident to the Office of the Children's Registry, as well as the Centre for the Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA). The manager has been on suspension since March when we made the report to the police. He was subsequently arrested, charged and released on bail."

St Juste said the child in the first case has been reintegrated with his mother and is receiving treatment from the CDA's clinical psychologist.



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