Story By: Koen Berghuis, Sub-Editor: Michael Leidig, Agency: Central European News
A model refugee who had his own Huffington Post column and was praised for his perfect integration into German society has been sentenced for sex attacks on schoolgirls.
Aras Bacho, a 20-year-old Syrian refugee, was found guilty on five cases of sexual harassment and sentenced to 80 hours of community service by a court in Lemgo in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.
Prosecutors proved that Bacho, who arrived in Germany as a refugee in 2010, groped female classmates aged between 17 and 19, grabbing them on their buttocks and breasts.
He also harassed schoolgirls by sending them lewd voice messages in which he was heard groaning.
Bacho, who lives in the nearby town of Bad Salzuflen, was known in Germany as a “model refugee” in local media for his fluent German language skills and dreams of becoming a journalist or photographer.
He started his own online blogs where he wanted “to show a different image of refugees”.
His online columns hit a note with many and the Syrian blogger was even hired to write columns for the German-language version of the Huffington Post.
One of his articles, where he wrote that angry immigration critics “should leave Germany”, went viral and was taken up by many different media outlets including public broadcaster WDR.
He wrote: “Refugees and Germans do not want to live in the same country as you angry citizens.
“You can, and I think that’s the right way, escape from Germany and please take Saxony and the AfD (far-right Alternative for Germany political party) with you.”
Since the court case, Bacho has removed all his social media profiles from the internet.