Indonesian school faces new sex abuse claims


JAKARTA: A prestigious Indonesian international school faced a mounting crisis as new sexual assault claims emerged and an ex-teacher was revealed to have been a suspected paedophile under FBI investigation.

The Jakarta International School had already been ordered this week to close its nursery following allegations a six-year-old boy was sexually abused by cleaning staff.

Claims of assault at a school favoured by the city’s expatriate community and wealthy Indonesians have sparked public anger and focused attention on the high incidence of sexual abuse at educational institutions across the country.

A second pupil has approached the official child protection agency, with a parent claiming the child had recently been abused at the nursery and witnessed the first victim being abused, the agency revealed.

“We were shocked when we heard that statement, that the young one had been abused,” said agency official Erlinda, who goes by one name, adding that the parents had been reluctant to report it to the police.

School head Timothy Carr said it was the first time he had heard the new allegations and that the school was working with officials to “promote healthy standards of education in Indonesia and child protection”.

The school also revealed that William James Vahey, a 64-year-old US citizen described by the FBI as a “suspected serial child predator”, taught at its middle school for a decade until 2002. — AFP

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