Athlete pleads guilty, hopes to get deported 

Srinagar: A snowshoe racer from Kashmir, who was accused of ‘inappropriate’ contact with a minor 12-year-old girl in Saranac Lake in upstate New York has pleaded guilty to a misconduct on Wednesday, Adirondack Daily Enterprise reported.

According to the report, Tanveer Hussain, 25, admitted in court to endangering the welfare of a child. The report said that he had been accused on a heavier charge as well — sexual abuse, a felony, plus a second count of endangering the welfare of a child — but prosecutors were willing to pass on that to get a guilty plea without going to trial.

Quoting the Essex County district attorney’s office, the report said that, it had offered Hussain this same plea deal when he was first accused in court, right after his arrest. Hussain had insisted that he was innocent and had refused to accept the charges.

Now, as part of the deal, Hussain will be sentenced to time served in jail, a surcharge, a DNA sample and a fee as well as a final order of protection for the child.

The report added that deportation proceedings have begun. Federal agents took Hussain to the Clinton County Jail in Plattsburgh, and from there he will be transferred to a federal detention facility in Batavia.

Prosecutors said the charge Hussain pleaded guilty to was about inappropriate communications he had with the girl.

The felony charge, which has been dropped, had to do with the girl’s allegation.

According to a press release by the Essex court, the plea deal saves the girl from having to testify in court and saves the county thousands of dollars since a Kashmiri interpreter would be needed for each day of a trial.

“Now, there are no rights to appeal, no hefty bill left to the taxpayers of this county, and the child can rest assured she will not be harmed by this man again,” the statement said.

Hussain’s arrest earlier this year made headlines around the world. He and his manager, Abid Khan, had fought to get to the World Snowshoe Championships, and the local community had fought to get to the Saranac Lake in upstate New York.

When they arrived in February, they got a celebrity welcome. Rabideau hosted a reception for them in the village offices. They were given free lodging at a local bed and breakfast. Restaurants offered them free meals. Local residents donated more than $1,600 on a crowd sourcing website and the mayor started to cover some of their travel expenses.

The day before the snowshoe races, Hussain and Khan met with Saranac Lake Middle School seventh-graders, who had written letters on their behalf to Schumer and Gillibrand. The girl who later alleged Hussain abused her was in the audience.

She told police Hussain kissed and groped her at the B&B, where she had gone to see him.

She and her mother later went to police after the mother found messages between the girl and Hussain on her cell phone. Hussain was arrested on March 1 a day before he was supposed to leave for home in Kashmir.



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