Larisa Paremuzyan

Mother Asks: "Mr. Serop, did you do such things to my child?"

Five of the thirteen individual subpoenaed to testify in the ongoing paedophilia trial of American-Armenian businessman Serop Der-Boghossian took the stand today at the Vanadzor Administrative Court.

All five were mothers of boys alleged to have had sexual relations with Der-Boghossian.

The testimony today changed little from what they stated during the pre-trial investigation. They preferred not to watch the tape, admitted to the court as evidence, showing their sons engaging in such acts.

They testified that they hadn’t been aware of what their sons had been engaged in.

When asked why the boys’ fathers hadn’t been called in to testify, Prosecutor Aram Amirzadyan said that, “The mothers are more closely involved in the upbringing of their kids.”

Hovsep Sargsyan, another prosecutor in the case from the Prosecutor General’s Office, noted that ‘the fathers would opt out of testifying given the nature of the case’.

He said that today’s testimony was a huge boost for the prosecution.

Sargsyan said that the testimony confirmed that the families affected were socially vulnerable and that the defendant had used this to his advantage in luring the adolescents into having sexual relations with him.

Prosecutor Amirzadyan told reporters that the parents did not deny that they had received money from Der-Boghossian but that there were some inconsistencies as to the amounts.

Amirzadyan noted that Der-Boghossian didn’t appear to be phased by the presence of the parents in the courtroom.

At one point, one of the mothers rose and shouted, “Mr. Serop, what are we hearing here today? Did you do such things to my child?”

Serop Der-Boghossian rose and answered, “I will not answer your question.”

The trial will recommence on September 19.