A United States (US) missionary based in Texas has admitted to molesting eight children at an orphanage in Malawi, according to British media outlet Sky News.
The article quotes the US Justice Department as saying Gerald Campbell, 66, used his position as general manager of Victory Christian Children’s Home in Luchenza, Thyolo, to lure his victims into his house and assault them.
According to the article Missionary Admits Abusing Malawi Orphan Boys from Sky News website, US Homeland Security agents began investigating Campbell in June 2014 after receiving a tip-off.
Reads the article: “He pleaded guilty on Wednesday in a Texas magistrate’s court to one count of engaging in illicit sexual conduct in a foreign place.”
The article further says Campbell admitted engaging in sexual acts with eight minors from the orphanage between 1997 and 2009.
“All the victims were orphans living at the children’s home. One boy was suffering from HIV.
“Campbell admitted he knew what he was doing was wrong, but he thought nobody would believe the victims if they reported the abuse,” it reads, adding he sent money to some of the minors in an attempt to buy their silence.
Campbell was a member of Grace Fellowship Church in Odessa, which had ties with the children’s home.
“One boy told investigators he went to the orphanage in 1999 after losing both of his parents. He said Campbell abused him, sometimes on a nightly basis, over eight months,” it reads further.
Opened in 1991 at Chuta Village in Luchenza, Thyolo by Dr. Charles and Gladys Trombley of the Charles Trombley Ministries, Victory Christian Children’s Home currently has over 30 orphans.
Our efforts to contact the children’s home were futile, but when contacted, Thyolo social welfare officer Elizabeth Mlato expressed ignorance over the matter, saying her office would investigate it.
Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare, Mary Shaba, said she had not yet read the story and promised to comment after she had gone through it. She had not yet commented as we went to press, despite reminders. n