An American Christian missionary has pleaded guilty to sexually abusing minors as young as 11 in the orphanage he ran with his wife and has been jailed for over 15 years.
The United States national, 61-year-old Gregory Dow, pleaded guilty during the trial on Monday to four charges of illicit sexual conduct with minors at the Dow Family Children’s Home in Kenya.
According to local media, his wife Mary Rose Dow took the four victims, aged between 11 and 13, to a clinic to get contraceptive implants without their consent.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Stengel said during a teleconference that this way, Dow “was able to perpetrate these crimes without fear that the abuse would result in pregnancy.”
Dow reportedly moved to Kenya in 2008 from the United States with his wife and their six children to set up the children’s home in the town of Boito in the western Kenyan district of Bomet County.
According to local media, he would even ask the young girls who he molested to call him ‘dad’.
The FBI reported that the sexual predator used his position of power to prey on the minors for his own sexual gratification.
According to media sources, in 2017 two of the young victims escaped and spoke out about the physical and sexual abuse they suffered there, but by the time the authorities arrived, the orphanage had already closed and the owners had fled.
Dow’s wife, Mary Rose Dow was caught near Nairobi and jailed for five months for child cruelty.
Dow fled to the United States and was finally arrested in 2019 after organisation Kenyan Women in the US (KWITU) petitioned for his arrest and his ex-wife Janice Jenkins came out to say he had also sexually molested their eldest daughter.
After an investigation and trial, Dow, who pleaded guilty to the charges, has been sentenced to 15 years and eight months in prison, after which he will be a registered sex offender.