Blackmail

Child abuse scandal emerges in Pakistani village, residents angry at police handling the case

Children whose families have been abused hide their faces in their village of Husain Khan Wala, Punjab province, Pakistan. REUTERS/Mohsin Raza

A child abuse scandal has shaken the central Punjabi village of Husain Khan Wala in Pakistan, and the parents of the victims claim the police are not doing enough to end it. Villagers told Reuters that a prominent family in the community forces children to perform sex acts on camera and then either sells the videos or uses them as blackmail to the families. According to various accounts by the victims, the children are drugged and threatened with guns and other weapons, before being forced to perform a variety of sex acts. One child claimed that he was forced to watch the video of himself once he woke up from the drugs. The footage began to circulate the village and parents went to the police, who, according to some, treated the victims like criminals and put one 15-year-old boy in jail. Conflicting accounts have been given by the local police, who are downplaying the scale of the situation. However, if an inquiry discovers that there has been inadequate police work, the provincial government will be involved, headed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s brother who said, “The culprits will be given the harshest possible punishment.”

Read the full story at Reuters.

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