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Swiss couple charged with sexually abusing children in India

A Swiss couple has been arrested in India on charges of sexually abusing street children. Police in Bombay said the couple faced prison terms of up to 10 years for kidnapping, molestation and sexual abuse of minors.

This content was published on December 18, 2000 - 08:41

Acting on a tip-off from a non-governmental organisation, police raided the couple's hotel room on Sunday, and found them filming two naked street children.

Bombay police said William Marti, 59, and his wife, Lily, 56, had lured children to their hotel and photographed them having sex with each other. They added that the couple had also engaged in sexual acts with children.

"The couple built up a good relationship with street children by giving them gifts, sweets and chocolates, and taking them on long drives," said Nandkumar Goplae, a spokesman for the Bombay police department.

He said the two Swiss nationals faced prison terms of up to 10 years, but added that this could be extended to life imprisonment "if there are signs of rape". The two girls are undergoing a medical examination.

Police also found pornographic photographs of girls from Thailand and Sri Lanka in the couples' possession. They said the couple had admitted to selling the films abroad and supplying material to Internet web sites.

Several foreign paedophiles have been arrested in Goa, a popular beach resort in western India, but this is the first time such offences have been registered in Bombay, India's financial capital.

swissinfo with agencies

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