ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION, Wednesday, November 1, 2006.

Dad gets 10 years for mutilation

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 11/01/06

Accused mutilator Khalid Adem was found guilty Wednesday and sentenced to 10 years in prison and five years probation.

After deliberating for about four hours the jury of seven women and five men found Adem guilty of aggravated battery and cruelty to children.

Judge Richard Winegarden sentenced Adem to 15 years for both charges to run concurrently. He will serve 10 years in prison and five years' probation. The maximum sentence for the charges was up to 40 years in prison.

Authorities say Adem, 31, circumcised his daughter sometime in 2001 when the girl was 2. Health and human rights activists refer to the procedure as female genital mutilation.

The mother reported the crime in 2003.

The jury apparently chose to believe Adem's young daughter who testified earlier in the trial. The young girl, now 7, told the jury that Adem cut her. Adem cried many times during the trial and he testified that he did not do it and that he loved his daughter. He had blamed his ex-wife and the maternal grandmother of circumcising the girl.

Adem sobbed after the guilty verdict was read. Moments after that his girlfriend, who was in court, collapsed and went into convulsions. The courtroom was cleared and paramedics were called.

Outside the courtroom, the scene quickly deteriorated. Adem supporters began to wail and hold each other. One man, who was taken from the courthouse by sheriff deputies, shouted: "Khalid is not guilty. We need justice."

(File created 1 November 2006)