Daycare abuse trial: chief suspect faces 20 years in jail

The man at the centre of a child sex abuse scandal in Amsterdam should be jailed for 20 years and then confined to a psychiatric prison for treatment, the public prosecution department said on Thursday.

Robert Mikelsons is on trial for abusing 67 very young children while working at several daycare centres in Amsterdam and as a babysitter. Mikelson’s partner Richard van Olffen faces 12 years for his role in the abuse scandal.
Child abuse is normally subject to a 12-year sentence but associated crimes make it possible for the department to call on judges to jail Mikelsons for 20 years, Nos television said.
Eight months
Mikelsons has admitted abusing 87 children with an average age of just eight months. At least 32 of his young victims were filmed. The abuse took place between 2007 and his arrest in December 2010.
Mikelsons’ legal team will outline the case for the defence next week.
Lawyers representing the young victims and their families have submitted damages claims totalling over €1m. Lawyer Richard Korver told the court earlier this week the impact of the abuse on the children could materialise at a later date.
In addition, many parents feel guilty that they did not protect their children or realise the abuse was taking place, the lawyer said.

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