Child Abuse by Foreigner
Can a foreigner guilty of sexually abusing a child under an Indian law or will he be charged under the domestic law of his home country
Yes, he shall be tried as per Indian law if the offence is alleged to have occured on Indian territory.
Under Section 3 and 5 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act, 2012, to elaborate upon the meaning of penetrative sexual assault and aggravated penetrative sexual assault, the legislature uses the term 'a person'. The usage of the term person indicates that any person irrespective of his nationality or gender can be charged for the offense mentioned under this Act. The objective of the Legislature was to protect the children and therefore they have been quite liberal with the terms used in the Act to ensure that it is applicable extensively and can check the sexual abuse against children. As long as the child is abused in India as per Section 2 of the Act, the offense can be investigated in India and a foreigner can be charged under this Act. In case he/she has gone back to his/her home country, petition for extradition can be made against him/her via the Ministry of External Affairs and the concerned diplomatic channels.
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