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23rd Jul 2014

Teenager Faces Life In Prison After Allegedly Sexually Assaulting Orphans During African Mission Trip


Matthew Durham could face life imprisonment after police learned of the alleged horrific crimes that he carried out while on a mission trip to Africa.

The teenager from Edmond, Oklahoma, was volunteering at a children’s orphanage in Kenya under the care of a group called Upendo when he allegedly raped and molested a number of children aged between 4 and 10.

According to KTLA, court records show that the 19-year-old confessed to the shocking allegations after being confronted by fellow volunteers.

His alleged crimes include the rape of several young girls and forcing young boys to engage in oral sex, while making other children watch.

Durham has volunteered at the orphanage four times in the last two years and his latest visit lasted from April to June.

During his time at the Upendo Children’s Home Durham posted several images to his social media accounts where he can be seen embracing young children.

The complaint against him states that Durham “requested to stay at the children’s home in an ‘overflow bunk’ rather than at an offsite facility.”

Speaking out about the shocking allegations, United States Attorney, Sanford Coats, said: “This is a young man in our community that made choices to exploit children in an orphanage.

“It’s a true tragedy all the way around.”

“A caretaker at the orphanage noticed something wasn’t right and confronted Mr. Durham. He admitted to some of the acts,” Coats continued.

“The victims are believed to be both boys and girls between the ages of four and nine, at least one of whom is HIV positive”’

Durham’s legal representative, Steven Jones, has said that the affidavit is “shot through with inaccuracies”.

“The events that occurred in Kenya the last maybe five six days that Matt was there frankly reveal some sort of pseudo-tribal psychological voodoo practiced on him, including confiscating his passport, false imprisonment, keeping food from him one day, delay in allowing him to depart from the country, misleading his parents.

“I don’t think Hollywood could make up what happened at this so-called orphanage,” Jones added.

Although the allegations took place overseas, prosecutors have said that Durham can still be held accountable for the crimes in Oklahoma and if convicted, could face a life sentence.

Lead image via KTLA