Nobel Laureate Charged with Sexual Abuse of Boy Scientist Brought Children to U.S

Article excerpt

A Nobel laureate who works at the National Institutes of Health was arrested Thursday on charges that he sexually abused a teen-age Pacific island boy he brought home to live with him in Maryland.

Daniel Carleton Gajdusek, 72, was booked into the Frederick County Jail on two counts of child abuse and two counts of perverted sexual practices and was held on $1 million bail.

The FBI said it began an investigation last year that focused "on his relationship with minor children" whom he brought to the United States from Micronesia and New Guinea after he visited those countries to conduct research. The charges are based on allegations by an informer, now 23 and a college student, who lived with Gajdusek when the informer was 14 and is still dependent on him. FBI agent Patricia L. Ferrante said in an affidavit that after the informer began cooperating with the bureau in February, he placed telephone calls to Gajdusek. In conversation, according to Ferrante's affidavit, the informer "asked him if he knew what a pedophile is, and Gajdusek answered, `I am one.' " On his official resume, Gajdusek (pronounced guy-DOO-sek) lists as his "family" 54 New Guinean and Micronesian children. The resume describes them as adopted, but authorities could find no evidence that those were legally recognized adoptions in the United States. Colleagues said Gajdusek is not married. Earlier Thursday, while Gajdusek was on a plane over the ocean, officers searched his home, his National Institutes of Health office and another office at Fort Detrick, Md. Journals, letters and photographs were among items seized, they said. The FBI said four children were living with Gajdusek at the time of his arrest. …


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