Children of Jehovah’s Witnesses are easy targets for pedophiles, newspaper Trouw reports after speaking to victims, members and ex-members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. One victim called the Christian society a “paradise for pedophiles”.
The victims Trouw spoke to were abused in the 80s and 90s. But according to the victims and others involved, abuse is still happening. The Netherlands counts about 30 thousand Jehovah’s Witnesses.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Netherlands follow the international guidelines of the organization. Their own legal system is above that of international authorities. In the organization, male elders are the judges. According to Trouw, for a conviction in the society, at least two witnesses are needed. This creates a problem as in many child sexual abuse cases, the only witnesses are the victim and the perpetrator. And perpetrators don’t tend to testify against themselves.