Male-On-Male Child and Adolescent Sexual Abuse in the Caribbean Region of Colombia: A Secondary Analysis of Medico-Legal Reports

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Nov 8;17(21):8248. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17218248.


Child and adolescent sexual abuse (CSA) is an important global health problem, especially in non-Western low- and middle-income countries. A number of studies have indicated that, in Latin American countries, male CSA is phenomenon of great concern. However, research on this topic is seriously lacking, and more specifically, on male-on-male CSA. We carried out a qualitative and quantitative secondary analysis of 680 cases of alleged male-on-male CSA that occurred between the years 2017 and 2018 in the Caribbean Region of Colombia. We analyzed the contents of forensic interviews with the alleged victims, conducted by professionals working at the Colombian Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences. Our findings indicated a high prevalence of cases of alleged male-on-male CSA among young minors. Most of these cases were allegedly perpetrated by offenders known to the victim and involved high levels of violence. Evidence-based and culturally grounded preventative actions, such as training-based programs for teachers and parents among other public health initiatives are needed to address this type of CSA. Further research is also required to gain a more fine-grained understanding of the cultural and social context of CSA in the Caribbean Latin American countries.

Keywords: Colombia; adolescents; child sexual abuse; children; male victim; male-on-male; sexual assault.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Caribbean Region
  • Child
  • Child Abuse, Sexual / ethnology
  • Child Abuse, Sexual / psychology*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Colombia / epidemiology
  • Criminals / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Social Problems