August 1999

Mosque pervert jailed for abusing boys

A PERVERT branded the ‘Monster of the Mosque’ was jailed yesterday for sexually molesting two little boys. 

Taher Din – who hobbled into court on crutches – had claimed he was too disabled to carry out the attacks. 

But he was convicted after witnesses revealed he had nothing more than a slight limp and needed no help walking. 

Glasgow Sheriff Court heard that the children, aged nine and ten, were abused in the city’s Ballater Street mosque as leading members of the Asian community worshipped just yards away. 

The first attack took place during the holiest festival in the Islamic calendar, Ramadan.

And the father of one of the victims said last night: “Din will be an outcast forever. 

“Moslems will find it difficult to forgive anyone who has committed such a terrible crime, particularly in the holiest of our places and at Ramadan.” 

Din, 34, who had a previous conviction for indecent assault, was jailed for a year had his name put on the Sex Offenders’ Register for a decade. 

Passing sentence, Sheriff James Murphy said that the pervert had terrorised the children. 

He added: “This happened in a place in which parents believe their children to be safe and where the children are encouraged to call male adults ‘uncle.’ 

“You have shown no sign of remorse.” 

Din, a member of the management committee of the mosque, was found guilty six weeks ago after a trial at Glasgow Sheriff Court. 

He was convicted of using lewd and libidinous practices and behaviour towards the children. 

During the trial, there were suggestions that officials from the mosque may have tried to cover up the attacks. 

The first victim told the court that when Din dragged him into a toilet an Islamic minister, known as an imam, unlocked the door. 

It was claimed that Din quickly left the scene and when the boy later told his father about the incident he could not bring himself to believe theallegation

No imam ever came forward to report the incident to the police. 

Din was finally brought to justice eight months later after being caught by a worshipper as he committed the second offence. 

Din lured the second boy to a changing room pretending he was going to play football with him. 

At the same time, worshipper Mohammed Farooq, who was in Glasgow studying for a doctorate, was resting after worship. 

Alerted by the boy’s shouts, Dr Farooq, who travelled from his home in Pakistan to give evidence, told how he found Din lying on top of the child in the mosque’s changing room. 

Dr Farooq saw the boy pulling up his trousers and Din zipping himself up. 

He reported the incident to an official in the mosque, who told him not to phone the police saying: “We know the guy, we will sort it out.” 

The incident was, however, reported to the police by the child’s mother. 

In the witness box, Din claimed that he was the victim of a conspiracy led by his wealthy and powerful brother-in-law who was out to get him. 

He went on to allege that his brother-in-law-paid witnesses to make false allegations against him. 

Din who hobbled into court for his three day trial on crutches, also claimed he could not have been the boys’ assailant because he was severely disabled. 

But witnesses told the court that he walked with just a slight limp and didn’t use crutches.