Imam at Chicago Islamic School Accused of Sexual Assault against Female Employees and Students


I often wonder why a growing number of women in America are converting to Islam. Under Islamic laws and teachings, women are nothing more than just another possession to a man. Muslim women do not have equal rights and have to live a very restrictive life while a Muslim man is basically free to abuse her and other women.

For instance, if an unmarried Muslim woman is sexually assaulted or raped by a Muslim man, the woman is often the one punished, not the man. No matter how much she tried to fight off the assault or rape, the Muslim woman is now considered to be blemished and damaged property and in too many instances can be discarded like any other damaged property. By discarded I mean killed by one of her male relatives because she has brought dishonor to the family. In the majority of instances, the man is free to go about his life like normal without any consequences.

In some Muslim countries, women are not allowed to drive a car, work in public where she would have dealings with men or even attend school to learn how to read and write. They are not allowed to walk alongside a man or talk to man who is not a relative. The gender restrictions experienced by Muslim women was the reason given by school officials in Dearborn, Michigan to justify having a girls only prom just for all of the Muslim girls in the schools.

Knowing how gender inequality runs rampant in the Islamic culture, I’m not surprised to learn that an Islamic imam who heads an Islamic school in the Chicago suburb of Elgin has been charged with criminal sexual abuse of a woman and aggravated battery in case involving at least 5 females at the school. He is also facing civil lawsuits from at least 5 females, some of which were minors at the time of the alleged incidents.

Mohammad Abdullah Saleem, age 75, founded the Institute for Islamic Education, a boarding school in Elgin. According to Victor Skinner with EAGNews:

“A 23-year-old former office manager at the Institute of Islamic Education claims in the lawsuit that Saleem’s alleged unwanted advances started shortly after she began work at the school in September 2013. She claims Saleem would stop into her office and ask her to remove her veil to give her hugs, massages and kisses.”

“The visits allegedly continued into the spring, and culminated in April 2014 when Saleem allegedly forced her to sit on his lap and fondled her, according to the lawsuit.”

“The woman quit her job, but kept her clothes from the last encounter, which tested positive for semen, though DNA from the clothing has not yet been tested against a DNA swab police took from Saleem’s mouth, the Tribune reports.”

“‘Me and my family were going to keep quiet about it. We just thought it happened to us,’ the alleged victim told the news site. ‘In my culture, if anything happens to an unmarried girl, whether it’s her fault or not, there’s a big scarlet letter on her. We were going to keep it to ourselves.’”

“The alleged victim worked with Imam Omer Mozaffar, a chaplain at Loyola University Chicago, to solicit an apology from Saleem, but the handwritten note lacked specifics about the encounters. Meanwhile, others heard of the allegations, prompting more alleged victims to come forward.”

“‘Nadiah Mohajir, executive director of Heart Women and Girls, a sexual health advocacy organization for Muslim women, said a Facebook and blog post by Mozaffar reaching out to potential victims triggered a coordinated effort to galvanize those victims and bring the allegations to light,’ the Tribune reports.”

“It worked.”

By writing ‘it worked’, Skinner means that other women have now come forward with their allegations of sexual misconduct by Saleem and you can read about them by visiting his article. You have to realize how hard it is for these Muslim women to admit that they were sexually abused by the imam because of the stigma it places upon them by their religious culture. This could result in them being ostracized by fellow Muslims and even physically abused by male relatives.

Of course, Saleem has denied all of the charges and allegations, but says that out of respect he has reduced his role at the institute. In virtually every case of a teacher or school administrator for a public school being accused of the similar allegations, they are immediately suspended and often fired to prevent any further contact with students. I guess that just a reduced role is a severe enough restriction for a Muslim man that again demonstrates the difference between Islam and American culture and law.

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