Dating app case: 4 of 6 get bail in sex assault on teen boy
Mumbai: Three months after a mother registered a sexual abuse case against several men her 16-year-old son had met on a gay dating app, a special Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act court recently granted bail to four of six men who were arrested in the case.
The boy in his statement to told the magistrate that he had told three of the accused his actual age. In his police statement, he named 26 people with whom he had allegedly been involved sexually or just chatting on the app. He also paid amounts ranging from Rs 15,000 to $900 (well over Rs 60,000) to about four of the men he met on the app.
In one of the bail orders, allowing the release of a 54year-old businessman and father of two teenagers, the court said, “No doubt the victim boy is 16 years old. Howev- er, applicant (accused) is also not having any criminal antecedent. He is not a professional offender. It will take time to dispose of case on merits. Till that period, keeping applicant in jail will amount to pretrial conviction.”
The matter came to light in May after the boy’s mother caught a 20-year-old old man sneaking out of her flat at 3am. The boy said he had borrowed Indian currency from his father on the pretext of helping out a friend and the dollars were transferred with the help of his father’s credit card. The boy said his parents were divorced. The boy said that he joined the app last year claiming he was an adult.He said he confided in his mother in February that he liked boys. At this, he said, his mother took him for counselling to a doctor.
The mother alleged that the men had taken advantage of her son despite knowing that he was a minor.