‘I don’t know how many children I raped while working for the UN’

Ramita Navai

July 29 2018, 12:01am, The Sunday Times

Didier Bourguet shifts in his seat and adjusts his red tie. He is finding it hard to recall how many children he raped when he was working for the United Nations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in 2004: “I would say about 20, maybe 25. I didn’t count.”

Bourguet was earning $7,000 a month as head of logistics in the peacekeeping mission in Goma while getting locals to procure children for him. He had two assets that ensured children trusted him: he was white and he worked for the UN.

He said the sex was consensual but is unsure whether the children were afraid to say no: “I’m not sure. I don’t think so but I’m not sure. Could be.”

After the Congolese police arrested Bourguet and the French authorities jailed him for nine years in 2008, the UN made a public promise to help his victims. That promise was never kept.