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Falsely-accused Dane will have to wait for US justice

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Falsely-accused Dane will have to wait for US justice
All charges against Malthe Thomsen were dropped and he is now seeking compensation. Photo: Michael Bothager/Scanpix
12:45 CEST+02:00
Danish citizen Malthe Thomsen was back in New York City this week to seek compensation for being wrongfully detained on sexual abuse charges.
His search for justice, however, will have to wait for a few more months. His lawyer, Jane Fisher-Byrialsen, told news agency Ritzau that Monday's court appearance ended with an adjournment until June. 
 
“He is disappointed. I believe that he is ready to keep fighting, but he is disappointed. He doesn't want his family to be in debt any more. This has been going on for a year and a half now and they really want to come out of this safe and sound,” she said. 
 
Thomsen has sued both a former coworker who accused him of sexually assaulting children at an upscale Manhattan daycare institution and the New York City Police Department, which he says coerced a false admission out of him. He is seeking $7 million (48 million kroner).
 
All sexual abuse charges against the now 24-year-old Thomsen were dropped in November 2014 after a five-month investigation
 
Thomsen was arrested in June 2014 on charges that he sexually assaulted 13 children. The young Dane steadfastly denied the accusations and claimed that he was duped by police into making a false confession. 
 
Thomsen was held in Rikers Island, one of the US's most notorious prisons, until being released on bail. Threats from other inmates resulted in his transfer to solitary confinement and he has described the entire experience as “a nightmare”
 
The case against Thomsen began to fall apart in August, when a hearing revealed that 12 of the 13 involved children denied being sexually assaulted by Thomsen. The remaining child was said to have given “indications” of sexual abuse, but prosecutors ultimately decided that they did not have enough evidence to win a conviction.
 
The charges against him were said to have been based solely on the the claims of former colleague Mariangela Kefalas, a woman who Thomsen's lawyer says was fired from the preschool for “creating so much drama”. According to the New York Times, Kefalas made her claims against Thomsen just days after being fired and is now suing the school for wrongful termination.  
 
The school's own investigation into the claims found them baseless. 
 
Thomsen's two mothers mortgaged their Denmark house and racked up some $200,000 in legal fees to help their son successfully fight the charges. 
 
Fisher-Byrialsen said that following Monday's court appearance, she presented the police with a final settlement offer to avoid taking the case to trial. The police have until Friday to respond. 
 
If they decline the settlement, Thomsen's case will proceed in June. 
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