Linda Hardan a former NJ substitute teacher has blamed her strict Muslim religious upbringing for sexually abusing a series of underage boys.
Linda Hardan a former New Jersey teacher has been sentenced to 3 years jail after performing sex acts on her underage pupils.
The 22 year old woman’s sentencing comes after sending scores of sexually explicit text messages to pupils, aged 14 to 16 years old in 2014, and then engaging in sex acts with them.
In one instance, the former substitute teacher sent a 14 year old boy no less than 40 selfies of herself ‘in varying states of undress’.
In her defense the woman’s attorney said Hardan blamed her ‘strict religious’ upbringing for her crimes.
Addressing the court, Hardan’s defense lawyer, Alissa Hasco said the Prospect Park, Muslim woman was driven in part to commit the offenses due to her strict religious upbringing, and suggested that she be treated by a therapist as oppose to serving time in prison.
Hardan had pleaded guilty in a deal with the Prosecutor’s Office that had called for a five-year prison sentence noted a previous report via northjersey.com.
However Passaic County Superior Court Judge Miguel de la Carrera found enough mitigating factors to depart from the plea deal and impose a three-year sentence on the substitute teacher acknowledging the impact of her formative years on her mental development.
‘She had classmates and friends, but somehow, perhaps because of limitations on her dating life, she didn’t find the proper outlet among males of her own age,’ he said.
‘She did not learn how to interact with guys her age,’ the judge continued.
In one case Hardan, who taught at Manchester Regional High School, sent 40 selfies of herself ‘in varying states of undress’ to a 14-year-old then drove him to a waterfall and performed a sex act on him.
The prosecutor said the boy was ‘so upset, so disgusted that he got out of the car and walked home’ two miles away.
Another student, 16, was so traumatized by Hardan’s actions that he dropped out of school and never returned, said prosecutor Gyselle Da Silva.
So much for the adage that most men ought to be happy for bedding the teacher that pervades current dogma.
The former teacher also went on to admit sexting a 16 year old boy.
In Hardan’s defense, relatives said the former teacher was ‘the foundation, the rock’ of her family while pleading for her to be spared jail.
A report via the dailymail notes the teacher being eligible for parole after a year while being under strict supervisory probation for the rest of her life.
De la Carrera said his sentencing options were limited by statute. ‘There might be a wish for the law to be more nuanced, a wish that the law might be different, but it’s not,’ he said.
The judge dismissed Hardan’s request that her sentence be delayed until she finishes her studies at Passaic County Community College in May.
He said that she will be better positioned to resume her studies when the prison sentence is behind her.