Rabat – A quadragenarian father of two and former imam of the Douar “bihalwane” Mosque in Sti Fadmax in Marrakech, is due to appear at the Marrakech Court of Appeal for a second hearing in a case of multiple rapes. The imam stands accused of the rape of seven minors who were students under his care at the mosque. The girls, aged 9 to 14, were studying the Qur’an when the imam violated their innocence.It is likely that much of the damage would have not been known to the public had one of the victimized adolescent girls succeeded in fleeing her home in May 2018. Read also: Morocco to Send 422 Imams to Europe in RamadanThe girl, aged 16 at the time of the incident, had received a marriage proposal, but she disappeared, fearing she would be outed as a non-virgin and cause her family distress. She was later found at a bus station in Casablanca.The new “wali” of the Marrakech region ordered that the families receive proper medical and psychological treatment to recover from the trauma. The imam, according to his first five-year sentencing, must pay each family of the victims between MAD 10,000 to 30,000.Associations dedicated to the rights of women and children have been pushing for the imam to be handed a much stiffer sentence.