German national gets life for taking nudes of minors
The Cebu City Regional Trial Court (RTC) has sentenced a German national to life imprisonment for taking nude photos of two teenage girls in a Talisay City motel in February 2011.
In a recent decision, Branch 24 Judge Jose Andal convicted Thomas Michael Ruhland, 46, of qualified trafficking and child abuse. On top of imprisonment, the judge ordered the German to also pay P3.4 million to his victims aged 16 and 14.
“This court is fully convinced and so finds that the accused performed all the elements in the commission of the offense,” read the decision.
Ruhland admitted to taking photos of girls but denied they were meant to be pornography. He claimed the photos were intended to entice people to buy houses for sale. The court disagreed.
“He (Ruhland) did maintain and hire the victims to engage in pornography by offering them money in exchange for their nude pictures. He took advantage of their vulnerability to attain his purpose of exploiting them,” it added.