Fisheries Company Fires Child Harassers Skip to content

Fisheries Company Fires Child Harassers

The owners and employees of the fisheries company Saltverk have announced that they were shocked and grief-stricken to learn that a 13-year-old boy suffered sexual harassment while working onboard one of its ships in the summer of 2010.

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Icelandic fishing vessels. The photo is not related to the story. By Bjarni Brynjólfsson.

The four men from the ship’s crew who were found guilty of the violations at Reykjanes District Court this week no longer work for the company, whose representatives would like to express their condolences to the victim and his family, visir.is reports.

One of the men exposed his genitals and obtruded them towards the boy’s face, and another poked the boy in the backside while he was bending down because he felt seasick while processing fish.

According to Fréttablaðið, the boy was also forced to watch a porn movie. All four men were found to have belittled him with words and deeds.

His father was also a member of the crew but said he had been afraid of interfering because he thought he might lose his job as a consequence, although he did respond angrily when the man poked his son from behind. The boy went home the following day.

He had three interviews with a psychologist afterwards who concluded that his stay on the ship for the ten days at sea had been very trying, visir.is reports.

The fishermen defended their actions by saying they had been a joke and a mild form of a “freshman initiation” and not at all intended as sexual harassment, however admitting that they may have gone too far in some instances.

Two of the convicts were given a 45-day suspended prison sentence, the third a 60-day suspended sentence and the fourth a three-month suspended sentence.

Ombudsman of Children Margrét María Sigurðardóttir told visir.is that she is pleased with the verdict, saying, “All violence against children, including harmful and humiliating treatment, is prohibited.”

ESA

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