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Morocco: University Lecturer jailed in “sex for grades" scandal

Morocco: University Lecturer jailed in “sex for grades" scandal
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FADEL SENNA/AFP or licensors


A Moroccan university professor has been sentenced to two years in prison for "indecent assault with violence" in a case of sexual blackmail against female students in exchange for good grades.

According to local media, the professor of economics at Hassan I University in Settat was found guilty of "indecent assault", "violence" and "sexual harassment" before the criminal chamber of the Court of Appeal of this city near Casablanca.

One of the complainants has waived all legal proceedings in exchange for compensation of 70,000 dirhams (6,640 euros), they said.

The economics professor is not the only one involved in this scandal which has become the talk of the town. Four other university professors, two of whom are on bail, are due to appear in court on Thursday.

They face heavy charges of "incitement to debauchery", "gender discrimination", "violence against women".

Due to this scandal, the dean of the Faculty of Law and Economics in Settat resigned at the end of November.

The "sex for good grades" scandal had earlier in September been reported by local media after an exchange of messages with sexual content between a lecturer and a student went viral on social network

In recent years, several cases of sexual harassment of female students by their professors in Moroccan universities have been reported in the media, but often without complaints being filed. And when they were, most of them were not followed up.

In 2019, Ghana’s investigative journalist, Anas revealed a 54-minute documentary that chronicled how academics targets the most vulnerable female students: those struggling with studies, seeking admission or in search of mentors to have sex with them. the documentary was focused on the situation in Ghana and Nigeria.

In 2018, after years of heated debate, a law came into force. For the first time, it makes acts "considered as forms of harassment, assault, sexual exploitation or ill-treatment" punishable by prison sentences.

However, the text has been judged "insufficient" by women's rights movements, which are calling for greater severity in dealing with this scourge.

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