ATLANTA – A citizen and national of Ethiopia was removed Monday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) to his native country after serving 10 years in prison.
Khalid Adem, 41, a native and citizen of Ethiopia was convicted in Gwinnett Country, Georgia, of aggravated battery and cruelty to children in the first degree on Nov. 1, 2006, and sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. Using scissors, Adem mutilated the genitals of his 2-year-old daughter. Adem was ordered removed Oct. 31, 2016, based on his criminal convictions. Adem’s case is believed to be the first criminal conviction in the United States for female genital mutilation, and became the catalyst for the specific criminalization of female genital mutilation under Georgia state law.
“A young girl’s life has been forever scarred by this horrible crime,” said Sean W. Gallagher, field office director for the Atlanta ERO Field Office. “The elimination of female genital mutilation/cutting has broad implications for the health and human rights of women and girls, as well as societies at large.”
Female genital mutilation/cutting is a federal crime. Any involvement in committing this crime is a serious human rights violation which may result in imprisonment and potential removal from the U.S. Individuals suspected of female genital mutilation/cutting, including sending girls overseas to be cut, may be investigated by ICE’s Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center (HRVWCC). Established in 2009 to further ICE’s efforts to identify, track and prosecute human rights abusers, the HRVWCC leverages the expertise of a select group of agents, lawyers, intelligence and research specialists, historians and analysts who direct the agency’s broader enforcement efforts against these offenders.