Police Identifying Briton’s Child Abuse Victims

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KUALA LUMPUR, Jun 3 – Police are taking steps to identify the victims of British paedophile Richard Huckle who admitted to multiple counts of molesting Malaysian children. Federal Police’s Sexual, Women and Child Investigation Division assistant principal director ACP Ong Chin Lan said Bukit Aman had already asked London-based National Crime Agency (NCA) to hand over the details of the case.

“So far, the victims have not been identified and the NCA only informed about the incident about one month ago, but no information had been given because the case is still on trial. We have asked for the information repeatedly and will continue to press them for more information for follow-up action. Hopefully, after the court judgement on Friday, the authorities in United Kingdom can provide us with more information,” she told the reporters here on Thursday.

British media reported that freelance photographer Huckle, 30, may have abused up to 200 children aged between six months and 12 years, from 2006 to 2014. The BBC reported that his sentencing hearing began in London on Wednesday, and is expected to conclude on Friday. The 91 charges levelled against him related to 23 children from mainly poor communities in Kuala Lumpur. He admitted to 71 of the charges.

The broadcaster said he first visited Malaysia on a teaching gap year when he was 18 or 19, before going on to groom children while doing voluntary work. Meanwhile, Ong said a programme in cooperation with a non-governmental organisation was being planned to help the victims. She was also asked on whether police would ask that Huckle be extradited to Malaysia.

She said they will not try Huckle in Malaysia because the sentence (which will be imposed) in the United Kingdom is for offences committed in Malaysia, (he) cannot be punished twice. In another development, Education Ministry director-general Datuk Seri Dr Khair Mohamad Yusof said in a statement, Huckle has never participated in programmes organised by the ministry.

It said Huckle’s name was not in the lists of participants for either the native speakers programme conducted from 2010-2015 or the English Teaching Assistants programme, carried out since 2012 until now. Both programmes involve the participation of foreigners as teachers.

The statement said that the Education Ministry would like to state here that British-born Richard Huckle has no link at all with the ministry through education programmes as claimed by some irresponsible quarters. Huckle was said to have provided English language tuition to poor Christian community in Kuala Lumpur.

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