DETROIT, Mich. (WCMH) – An emergency room doctor from Detroit is facing federal charges, accused of performing female genital mutilation on young girls.
Jumana Nagarwala, M.D., of Northville, Michigan, is accused of performing the procedure out of a medical office in Livonia, Michigan, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan.
Officials believe this to be the first case of its kind in federal court.
The 44-year-old is accused of performing genital mutilation on girls between 6 and 8 years old. According to the complaint, some of the victims even traveled from out-of-state to have the procedure performed.
A 7-year-old victim told investigators she was brought to Detroit for a “special” girls’ trip, according to the complaint. She was taken to Nagarwala’s office, where the procedure was allegedly performed.
The complaint said she was then told not to talk about the procedure.
“According to the complaint, despite her oath to care for her patients, Dr. Nagarwala is alleged to have performed horrifying acts of brutality on the most vulnerable victims,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Blanco. “The Department of Justice is committed to stopping female genital mutilation in this country and will use the full power of the law to ensure that no girls suffer such physical and emotional abuse.”
“The allegations detailed in today’s criminal complaint are disturbing. The FBI, along with its law enforcement partners, are committed to doing whatever necessary to bring an end to this barbaric practice and to ensure no additional children fall victim to this procedure”, said Special Agent in Charge David Gelios.
Nagarala is an emergency medicine doctor at the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.
The hospital system released the following statement to WXYZ:
The alleged criminal activity did not occur at any Henry Ford facility. We would never support or condone anything related to this practice. The doctor has immediately been placed on administrative leave.”
Nagarala was expected to appear in federal court Thursday.