A court in Uganda has fined a couple from the United States who pleaded guilty to cruel and neglectful treatment of their 10-year-old adopted son.
According to Reuters, Nicholas and Mackenzie Spencer from South Carolina, who are about 30 years old, were detained in December last year.
They were accused of human trafficking and torture of a 10-year-old boy whom they raised for two years in Kampala, the capital of Uganda. It is known that the child has special needs.
For this crime, the couple faced life imprisonment.
|Screenshot: Law and Crime|
The nanny informed the local police about the inhumane treatment of the boy. Foster parents forced the child to sleep on a wooden floor and fed him only cold food.
The judge said during a court hearing on Tuesday, Oct. 31, that as a result of a plea deal with prosecutors, the defendants, who were released on bail in March, agreed to plead guilty but to lesser charges.
In particular, the couple pleaded guilty to cruel and negligent treatment of a child and illegal stay in the country and employment without a permit. For this, they were sentenced to two months in prison, which they served after their arrest last year.
“The child needed help and support because he lost his father and was abandoned by his own mother. Unfortunately, the accused could not cope with his special behavior.” – said judge Alisa Kyomukhangi, pronouncing her decision.
The court also ordered the defendants to pay a fine of approximately 9.3 million Ugandan shillings ($2,460). They were also ordered to pay 100 million Ugandan shillings ($26,000) in damages to the child.
According to the couple’s lawyer, the boy had psychiatric problems. The couple allegedly tried to take care of him properly, but since they had no experience in parenting, they “may have gone too far.”
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Iryna Bura, UP. Life