|Reaction and displeasure from the verdict of 15 years’ imprisonment to the paedophile Jove Kostadinovski from Sasavarlija passed by the Judicial Court in Stip for sexual assault on children guardians of the Foster Home “11 Oktomvri” in Skopje|
The First Children’s Embassy in the World - Megjashi, on 2 September, 2008, sent a reaction on the verdict passed to Jove Kostadinovski for assault and rape of one of the two 13-year-old boys with the sentence of only 15 years’ imprisonment, expressing anger and revolt for the inadequate punishment for the committed crime. We reminded that this is Jove Kostadinovski’s third criminal act in a row. He was previously convicted of the rape of a 5-year-old girl the first time, and of an older woman the second time.
The First Children’s Embassy in the World - Megjashi has reacted several times demanding that the judges sentence the paedophiles - children rapists, with the most severe sentence of life imprisonment. It is not clear why the court in Stip could not pass the maximum sentence which according to the Criminal Law can be passed for such an act! We are especially highlighting that the offender recuperated the act three times. Does a sexual molestation of a child for 23 days not represent the most brutal harassment and humiliation? The next thing we question is what will happen to this child who has been abused and tormented for 23 days? Who will bear responsibility for the consequences from the trauma that this child has suffered?
We believe that Jove Kostadinovski meets all criteria for life imprisonment in accordance with the Article 188 from the Criminal Law where it is stated:
(4) If as a result from the acts in Paragraphs 1 and 2, there is a severe physical injury, death or other difficult consequences, or the act has been committed by a group of people or in especially cruel or humiliating manner, the perpetrator will be sentenced to at least ten years’ of prison or with life imprisonment.
In Macedonia there is punitive legal grounds for passing the strictest sentences to paedophiles and the sexual offenders of children, but still, the judges continue to pass mild sentences.
Also, on this particular case, the First Children’s Embassy in the World - Megjashi reacted by demanding life sentence as a punitive measure, since complete isolation can help prevent the sexual abuse of children by the same offenders and also serve as a warning for all future cases.
We also demanded responsibility from the headquarters of the Foster Home for Parentless Children “11 Oktomvri” from Skopje for their neglect of the missing children, one of which was in hostage of the paedophile Jove Kostadinovski, but we have no information that such a procedure has been started so far.
We would also like to remind the governmental institutions in charge that the Republic of Macedonia has ratified the Convention of the European Council for child protection from sexual exploitation and sexual abuse (2007), the Convention for Children’s Rights (1993) and is obliged to respect all rights provided by this Convention. The last cases of sexual abuse of children are another example of the cruelest violation of children’s rights guaranteed by the Convention.
According to the Articles 19, 34, 36, 39 from this Convention the countries signatory are obliged to protect children form all kinds of sexual abuse and sexual molestation, to protect them from physical or emotional violence, abuse and neglect, from all kinds of sexual harassment and sexual torment, from all other kinds of exploitation harmful for the child, and to take measures for a better physical and mental healing, as well as measures for social reintegration of the child victim. For this purpose, it is especially important that the member countries take all national, bilateral and multilateral measures for prevention of the worst types of sexual abuse and harassment.
In the Republic of Macedonia, despite the more frequent disclosure and arrest of the paedophiles by the police and the recent changes in the Criminal Act which allow far more severe sentences, the judges still pass minimum sentences. The media continue to report on these cases but it seems not to be enough. In the end, we ask once more what should happen to the children so that the judges started giving the most severe punishments to paedophiles? What is especially alarming is the fact that usually a 100 percent of the offenders released from prison recuperate the criminal acts.