A man who was found guilty in Gwinnett County of brutally cutting his 2-year-old daughter's genitals was deported to his native Ethiopia, federal authorities said Tuesday.
Khalid Adem, 41, was convicted in November 2006 of aggravated battery and cruelty to children and sentenced to 10 years in prison and five years of probation, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s archives.
Using scissors, Adem mutilated the girl, officials said. He is believed to be the first person in the United States convicted of female genital mutilation, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The case led to a change in Georgia law.
Adem was charged with aggravated battery and cruelty to children because there was no specific law preventing female genital mutilation.
A bill making it a felony in Georgia was signed on May 6, 2005.
“A young girl’s life has been forever scarred by this horrible crime,” said Sean W. Gallagher, field office director in Atlanta for the federal Enforcement and Removal Operations. "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."
The World Health Organization has estimated that more than 200 million girls and women have been cut in 30 countries, mostly in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, according to The New York Times.
Since 2003, ICE has arrested more than 380 individuals for human rights-related violations of the law, the agency said.
Adem was arrested that year after the South African-born mother of his daughter accused him of circumcising the girl, according to The AJC. The girl told Gwinnett authorities then that her father had done it. The incident happened in 2001.
Adem denied he committed the act.
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