Ex-UBS-Manager wegen “Escort”-Service im Knast

“Singapore Law Watch” veröffentlichte heute ein bemerkenswertes Urteil aus dem Stadtstaat. Hier das Original auf Englisch:

He lacked remorse, was reckless about girl’s age: Judge

A FORMER Swiss banker convicted of two charges of obtaining paid sex from a minor was jailed for four months and three weeks yesterday.

Juerg Buergin, 41, was found guilty last week of paying $600 and $650 to the then underage escort for her sexual services at the Shangri-La Hotel and Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Sept 29, 2010, and Jan 3, 2011, respectively.

In his grounds of decision, District Judge Eddy Tham said Buergin’s lack of remorse was evident in his argument that he had been a victim of “cheating”.

He said Buergin was “reckless” in not verifying the girl’s age. Buergin had claimed that he believed every detail about the escort given on her pimp’s website, other than her name.

But the judge said this “stretches incredulity” because prostitution is an industry where misrepresentation is common, and Buergin was “not a naive person” but someone holding a responsible position as a banker.

Also, Buergin’s claims that he could not remember whether they had sex were a “feeble attempt at putting up a defence”, the judge said, adding that the wide age disparity of 22 years between them was also a relevant consideration. The girl had been 17 at the time.

Judge Tham noted the culpability of Buergin in claiming trial, which meant he “would not be afforded the discount” meted out to those who “pleaded guilty at the earliest available opportunity”.

The judge credited the defence for ending the trial three days earlier than the time allotted for it. He added that the defence “did not demean the minor in any way”, and were “very fair in their questions during the cross-examination”. As a result, he said the prosecution’s proposed six- month sentence was “slightly on the high side”.

The judge felt that an appropriate sentence would be five months, but took into account the six days that Buergin had spent in remand after having failed to raise bail on time, and reduced the term accordingly.

Defence counsel Selva K. Naidu said his client did not intend to appeal for now but added that he has two weeks to decide.

He added: “I think he wants to put this behind him and go back home.”

The father of two was the first to claim trial in the online vice ring case, in which 51 men have been charged. Eighteen have pleaded guilty and been sentenced to between eight and 16 weeks’ jail.

Two other men have since claimed trial to similar charges. Their cases are ongoing.



Source: Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Permission required for reproduction.

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