Canadian philanthropist Peter Dalglish loses appeal of sexual assault conviction in Nepal
Arun Budhathoki Kathmandu, Nepal Special to The Globe and Mail Published January 23, 2020 Updated January 23, 2020 Published January 23, 2020
Canadian philanthropist Peter Dalglish lost his appeal in Nepal of his conviction on charges of sexually assaulting two children.
The Patan High Court upheld the conviction Thursday, but reduced Mr. Dalglish’s sentence from nine years to eight because of changes in Nepalese law.
Mr. Dalglish’s lawyer, Dennis Edney, told The Globe and Mail after the verdict was rendered that it was “a miscarriage of justice,” accusing Nepalese police – members of the Central Bureau of Investigation – of committing an illegal raid on Mr. Dalglish’s home and of building their case on fabricated evidence and coerced witnesses.
“We showed the judges that no evidence (medical or visual) existed and yet the judges have announced the verdict in the favour of the two boys who were basically set up by the CIB. This is injustice,” Mr. Edney said.
Mr. Dalglish, who was awarded the Order of Canada in 2016 for his work helping children escape poverty through various charitable funds and foundations, was arrested on April 8, 2018, at his home in a village east of Kathmandu, accused of sexually assaulting two boys age 11 and 14.
The government’s lawyer on Thursday argued that the CIB investigations were legal and accused Mr. Dalglish of trying, through intermediaries, to get the boys to recant their stories. At the appeal, the mother of one of the boys presented testimony to the judges behind closed doors.
Mr. Dalglish’s lawyers have contended that the boys provided varying accounts and have since recanted their accusations.
After the verdict, Mr. Dalglish told The Globe he doesn’t understand how this could happen.
“I love this country despite what has happened today. I would like to thank my family, friends and lawyers for supporting me throughout the hearing. I have no animosity against the Nepali people or the country despite the verdict. I am disappointed that the verdict happened even when there’s no evidence against me,” he said.
His legal team is considering an appeal to Nepal’s supreme court. Canadian aid worker Peter Dalglish jailed nine years in Nepal for sexual assault of boys