Distorted fates | EUNewsletter

Distorted fates

23 March 2011

The spread of sexually related crimes against juveniles in Armenia is a serious cause for concern. From 2000-2010, 112 victims were registered in the Courts of First Instance of Armenia, 101 of whom were children under 18.
“Sexual abuse against teenagers in Armenia is not merely a pending issue, but also a very difficult problem, as such crimes are known for their latent nature. No one wants anyone to know about a sexually related crime committed against his/her child”, said Arthur Ghambaryan, a representative of the Prosecutor General’s Office, on 2 February during a press conference on the protection of juvenile victims of sexual offences.
The Criminal Code of Armenia condemns sexual crimes against juveniles; however, penalties are often mild. According to Article 140 of the Armenian Criminal Code, the minimum applicable punishment is a fine of AMD 100,000, while the maximum is 2 years’ imprisonment. In 2009, out of 18 cases, only 3 offenders were given prison sentences, while the remaining cases were settled through fines. The Prosecutor’s Office remarked that punishment through fines must be removed from the Article and recommended that mandatory imprisonment be made compulsory.
“If criminals have misgivings about being arrested, they will think before acting”, stated Tatevik Bejanyan, the manager of the EU funded project “Prevention of child trafficking in Armenia”. The press conference was held within the framework of the project, which is implemented by the Czech NGO “People in Need”.

Distorted fates

The spread of sexually related crimes against juveniles in Armenia is a serious cause for concern. From 2000-2010, 112 victims were registered in the Courts of First Instance of Armenia, 101 of whom were children under 18. "Sexual abuse against teenagers in Armenia is not merely a pending issue, but also a very difficult problem, as such crimes are known for their latent nature. No one wants anyone to know about a sexually related crime committed against his/her child", said Arthur Ghambaryan, a representative of the Prosecutor General’s Office, on 2 February during a press conference on the protection of juvenile victims of sexual offences. The Criminal Code of Armenia condemns sexual crimes against juveniles; however, penalties are often mild. According to Article 140 of the Armenian Criminal Code, the minimum applicable punishment is a fine of AMD 100,000, while the maximum is 2 years' imprisonment. In 2009, out of 18 cases, only 3 offenders were given prison sentences, while the remaining cases were settled through fines. The Prosecutor's Office remarked that punishment through fines must be removed from the Article and recommended that mandatory imprisonment be made compulsory. "If criminals have misgivings about being arrested, they will think before acting", stated Tatevik Bejanyan, the manager of the EU funded project “Prevention of child trafficking in Armenia". The press conference was held within the framework of the project, which is implemented by the Czech NGO "People in Need".