👨‍⚖️ A 43-year-old man has been convicted of sexually assaulting a child five years ago

👮‍♂️ His charges mean a minimum sentence of 25 years behind bars

💻 The married accountant is still facing a charge for having child porn, officials say

PARSIPPANY-TROY HILLS — A Morris Plains man must serve at least 25 years in state prison for the aggravated sexual assault of a young child, according to the Morris County prosecutor.

Amit Bhatt, a former Parsippany-Troy Hills resident, was convicted Friday after a three-day trial. The married 43-year-old accountant still faces a charge for the possession of child porn in Bergen County, authorities say.

Prosecutor Robert Carroll said Bhatt "performed sex acts" on an 8-year-old child in Parsippany-Troy Hills on Oct. 28, 2017. Bhatt also touched the victim's inner thigh.

Amit Bhatt (Burlington County Sheriff's Office)
Amit Bhatt (Burlington County Sheriff's Office)

More than four years passed before the victim came forward to the Lyndhurst police in January 2022 and reported the assault. Police then contacted the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office and subsequently authorities in Morris County.

Earlier this month, the BCPO announced it had charged Bhatt with third-degree possession of child porn. That case remains ongoing.

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Bhatt was found guilty Friday of first-degree aggravated sexual assault, second-degree sexual assault, and third-degree child endangerment.

Morris County Correctional Facility. (Google Maps)
Morris County Correctional Facility. (Google Maps)

The aggravated sexual assault conviction means Bhatt must receive a sentence of between 25 years and life in prison. He will then need to serve at least 25 years before he is eligible for parole, regardless of his full sentence.

Bhatt's sentencing is scheduled for Mar. 17.

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Over the past few years, state lawmakers have taken on the challenge of dealing with accused child predators among the ranks of teachers and educators.

In 2018, the so-called “pass the trash” law went into effect, requiring stricter New Jersey school background checks related to child abuse and sexual misconduct.

The follow individuals were arrested over the past several years. Some have been convicted and sentenced to prison, while others have accepted plea deals for probation.

Others cases are still pending, including some court delays amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

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