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Three Women Recall Horrific Moments In Alleged Rape

Three Women Recall Horrific  Moments In Alleged Rape
Josua Colanaudolu
May 16
11:00 2017

Three victims gave evidence in the High Court in Suva yesterday, in the trial for murder, multiple rape and abduction against Josua Colanaudolu.

The matter is being heard before Justice Salesi Temo.

While the first victim was giving evidence State Prosecutor Lee Burney informed the court that Colanaudolu was mocking the victim.

Justice Temo said: “I encourage people to show their true colours in the court room when the battle gets hot.

“The more you lose your cool the more you expose yourself.”

Justice Temo said he was recording the behaviour of the accused in court.

“People who come to the court room and mock the court room; it is like a boomerang effect where it comes back and hits your forehead,” said Justice Temo.

The court heard that there were four victims in the matter, including the deceased, Mere Ailevu.

For the first victim, Colanaudolu faces two counts of abduction which is alleged to have happened between January 1, 1998 and February 31, 2001.

For the same victim, he is charged with two counts of rape.

In the case of the second victim, Colanaudolu is charged with one count each of abduction, rape and indecently annoying females. These charges relate to incidents that are alleged to have taken place between June 1, 2002 and December 31, 2004.

In the matter of the third victim, Colanaudolu faces one count of rape, which is alleged to have taken place on November 16, 2012.

The fourth victim in the trial is deceased, Mere Ailevu.

In Ailevu’s case, Colanaudolu faces one count of murder, a count of abduction and two counts of rape.

According to particulars read out in court, the incident is alleged to have happened between March 13 and 14, 2016.

Mr Burney asked the first victim who the father of her first baby was as she gave birth at the age of 16.

The victim informed the court that the father of the baby was Colanaudolu and she said that she was only 14-years-old when Colanaudolu had first abducted and raped her.

“My parents used to send me to the shop and Colanaudolu used to follow me and on one occasion when I was returning from the shop he was waiting for me at a flower bed from where he pulled my hand,” she said.

“He told me not to say a word and took me forcefully to his house and he had one hand on my mouth and with the other hand he held onto my clothes strongly.”

The court heard from the victim that Colanaudolu took the victim into the house and pushed her into the room where he performed the acts for 10 minutes.

“When I refused, he punched both my thighs and I felt weak,” said the victim.

She informed the court that Colanaudolu had threatened to kill her if she told anyone about the incident.

The court was informed that Colanaudolu raped the first victim at least eight times.

Defence lawyer Lavinia David put it to the victim that the alleged incident did not happen and neither did Colanaudolu take her towards the flower bed.

“No, he is lying and he knows the things he did to me,” the first victim said in court.

“Sometimes he enters my house without permission, he even came inside and kissed me while I was asleep and without my permission forcefully took me to his house where he performed the sexual acts.”

Ms David suggested to the victim that the alleged acts did not happen to which she replied saying that it did.

In the case of the second victim, she told the court she was breastfeeding her baby girl on May 30, 2002 when Colanaudolu entered her home in the middle of the night.

She told the court that when she tried to scream, Colanaudolu covered her mouth and told her to go outside with him.

“When I struggled he showed me a knife so I followed him to the sitting room where my parents were lying and when I tried to scream he took the knife and pointed it to my throat and told me not to say a word and go silently outside.

“He said that he would injure my parents or my baby if I make any noise,” said the second victim.

The court heard that Colanaudolu took her further away from her home to a dog house where he forced himself on her and the act took nearly an hour.

“I tried to struggle and he punched my thighs and I could smell beer on him,” she said.

Mr Burney asked the victim if there was any other occasion where Colanaudolu had come into her home uninvited.

The victim said that in 2004 when she was at her sister’s house doing the laundry she had fallen asleep, and suddenly she woke up to the sound of footsteps.

She said that when she opened her eyes she saw Colanaudolu standing naked in front of her; and when she switched on the lights he looked surprised and ran away.

Ms David in cross examination asked the victim why she had not reported the matter at the age of 20 when she was old enough.

The victim said that she was living under the roof of her parents and any decision concerning the alleged incident was a matter for her parents to decide and not her.

The fourth prosecution witness; the third victim told the court that in November 2012 was the worst day of her life.

Mr Burney asked the victim to tell the court why it was the worst day of her life.

She told the court that on November 16, 2012 while she was at a relative’s house, Colanaudolu woke her up and told her that her father was looking for her and that he was sent to get her home.

It was stated in court that instead of going to her father, Colanaudolu took her to a pub where she started to scream.

“I screamed and he pushed me and said that I wasn’t going anywhere and he told me to shut up,” she said.

“I was still screaming and he punched both sides of my ribs which made me feel weak and then he punched both my thighs two times and it made my legs feel numb.”

She told the court that Colanaudolu told her to undress and then forced himself on her and performed the alleged act.

Colanaudolu is represented by Ms David and Michael Fesaitu while the prosecutors are Mr Burney and Sujata Lodhia.

The case continues today.

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

Feedback:  jessica.gounder@fijisun.com.fj

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