Australian pedophile sentenced to life in jail in India

An Indian court sentenced an Australian man to 10 years in prison for his role in a pedophile racket in India's southwestern tourist hub of Goa.

Warner Wulf Ingo, 44, was described in court as an important link in the ring that abused young boys at an orphanage it operated in Fatorda, a small town in Goa state. Police uncovered the crimes 16 years ago.

"The accused has taken undue advantage of the poverty of the victim boys and has exploited them sexually," said Judge Anand Salkar.

Ingo fled to Australia, but he was arrested in Sydney and brought to India in 2005. He has already served two years in jail.

He did not react as the judge read out the sentence. He had faced life in jail, the AP reports.

Ingo and his lawyer did not comment on the sentence, and it was not known whether they would appeal the decision.

Ingo was an accomplice of the late Freddy Peats, the main person accused in the racket. Investigators said Peats was believed to be German, but his nationality could not be established during the investigation. Peats was arrested in 1991 and convicted in March 1996. He died in an Indian prison in April 2005 while serving a life sentence. New Zealander Eoghan Colm McBride was sentenced to prison for seven years in July 2002 for running a child prostitution racket.

The ring was uncovered in 1991 after the son of Peats' neighbor complained to his father of sexual abuse after being lured to the home. Police found photographs of boys in the orphanage, many posing in the nude or involved in sexual acts.

Police found drugs that were used to induce the preadolescent boys into sexual acts. They also found evidence of the sale of some minors abroad.

Investigators said about 15 more Western tourists were involved in the racket, including suspects from France, Sweden, Australia, Germany, Thailand and Britain.

Dominique Sabir from France, another accused, was arrested in 1996 but he jumped bail and has still not been found.

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