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‘I am not a pedophile’: German.

May 21, 2015 ·  By ( Sunstar.com.ph )

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A GERMAN national who was arrested for spending time alone with a minor denied yesterday that he was a pedophile.

“My heart is for (the) poor, poor family,” said Herbert Major.

Police arrested Major after he was found in the company of a 14-year-old girl in Hagnaya Wharf in San Remigio, Cebu last Tuesday morning.

Major, 63, said he had no intention of using Diana (real name withheld) for sex. He said he planned to check a lot in Sta. Fe, Bantayan he wanted to buy.

The foreigner, who is not separated from his wife, said he arrived in the country last year to help typhoon Yolanda survivors in Leyte and in northern Cebu.

He chose to help Diana’s family. He admitted giving money to the mother for the girl’s education.

“She has nothing to eat. Eleven children has nothing to eat,” he said in broken English. “I helped the family. They are my new family.”

Cebu Provincial Police Office Director Noel Gillamac said Republic Act 7610 (the Special Protection of Children against use, Exploitation and Discrimination Act) prohibits any person to be in company with a minor who is not a relative.

The law’s Section 10(b) states: “Any person who shall keep or have in his company a minor, 12 years or under or who in 10 years or more his junior in any public or private place, hotel, motel, beer joint, discotheque, cabaret, pension house, sauna or massage parlor, beach and/or other tourist resort or similar places shall suffer the penalty of prision mayor (six months to four years) in its maximum period and a fine of not less than P50,000.”

When asked if he knew the law, Major said he did not.

“Every country has its own laws and it is impossible to know all laws. If I know it, I won’t do it,” he said.

Before he was arrested past 11 a.m., Catherine Urcales of Hagnaya Violence Against Women and Children Desk was told by porters that they saw a foreigner driving a motorcycle with Diana.

Urcales informed Hagnaya Barangay Captain Jose Cabahug, who then went to the police.

Urcales and social worker Harlyn Hagnaya approached Major.

They held the two for an interview. Coast Guard personnel helped them secure Major until the police arrived in the wharf.

Cabahug said Diana’s mother met Major through the Internet last year.

Major, however, said he knew the mother in Barangay Maribago, Lapu-Lapu City. The foreigner has a business in San Remigio.

Gillamac said he will give a commendation to Cabahug, Hagnaya and Urcales for their vigilance.

“Abtik kaayo mo. Nindot nang vigilant ta (It is nice to know that you are vigilant),” he told them.

The police official said some foreigner’s modus is to help typhoon survivors.

He said they are trying to determine if Major can be held liable for human trafficking.

A warrant, he added, is needed to search the rented house and gadgets of Major.

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