An Afghan refugee was convicted of molesting a three year-old girl at a Marine Corps base Friday.
Mohammed Tariq, 24, was caught fondling a girl’s private parts above her clothes at Quantico Marine Corps Base in Virginia last year after he fled Afghanistan as the Taliban took control of the country. A federal jury found him guilty of abusive sexual contact, according to the Associated Press.
The jury in U.S. District Court in Alexandria on Friday found Mohammed Tariq, 24, guilty of abusive sexual contact.https://t.co/p3dMpQuBNF
— Stars and Stripes (@starsandstripes) January 24, 2022
Tariq reportedly told interpreters at the base that the actions were acceptable in his culture. He was arrested in September of last year, and a judge rejected attempts to suppress his statements, the AP reported.
Tariq and the girl, who was unrelated to him, were housed at Quantico, which was one of eight military bases used for holding Afghan refugees awaiting resettlement after the American withdrawal from their home country. (RELATED: State Department Admits More Than 100 Americans Were Trapped After Afghanistan Fell)
More than 120,000 people were evacuated in total from Afghanistan last August. According to an Inspector General report, Tariq’s assault was the only reported “major criminal security incident” at Quantico, which housed 3,755 refugees at a total cost of $188 million for the Marine Corps and the Pentagon.