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Women Drinking All Night With Men Is No Promise For Sexual Activity: Judge

Women Drinking All Night With Men Is No Promise For Sexual Activity: Judge
August 08
11:06 2018

A woman who has been drinking all night with men is not necessarily holding out the promise of sexual activity.

The fact that she might be drunk increases the likelihood that she may not be in a position to give consent or not which increases the probability of recklessness in the element of consent.

The sentiments were stressed by Justice Paul Madigan, at the High Court in Labasa, while sentencing two men for sexually assaulting and raping a New Zealand woman on July 7, 2017.

The offences arose out of a night of heavy drinking on Taveuni when the two men Taitusi Manuca, 26, and Jone Colata, 35, met the woman and her husband on a beach at about 7pm.

The couple along with the two men drank alcohol in a number of locations until about 3am when they arrived at a pier known locally as Korean Wharf.

At the wharf the four listened to music and after they ran out of beers they shared a bottle of rum.

After about an hour, the woman felt exhausted and sat in the passenger seat of their car with the door open.

She fell asleep but awoke to find Manuca on top of her penetrating her while Colata stood outside and cheered him on.

The first accused raped the woman and committed other sexual acts on her until he was finished at which point the two men changed places and the second accused committed the same acts on her.

While this was happening the woman’s husband was nowhere to be seen or heard and after a while he returned in a dazed and confused state. He had a wound on his head.

Without realising what had happened he drove the two men to town and dropped them off.

It was only then that the woman told her husband about her ordeal.

During sentencing Justice Madigan said the couple had been extremely hospitable to both men all night supplying them with drinks and cigarettes and transported them in their car.

“The men did not spend one cent towards the purchases of liquor and then to repay the couple with such abuse to Mrs B is appalling,” he said.

“Mr and Mrs B were newcomers to the island and to Fijian culture and society and to assail the dignity of Mrs B by these crimes would have a profound effect on how they would view their newly adopted community in the years to come.”

In mitigation Manuca submitted that he is a yaqona farmer and is married with a  young daughter.

Justice Madigan stated that Manuca’s claims that he had nothing to do with the crime showed a distinct lack of remorse on his part.

He said Manuca has no respect for authority by offending while on a suspended sentence and reoffending while on bail.

Colata submitted that he was married with two children and he stayed home and looks after the children and his parents in law while his wife worked to support the family.

Manuca was ordered to serve a term of 13 years and eight months imprisonment with a minimum term of 10 years imprisonment while Colata will serve 12 years and six months imprisonment with a minimum term of nine years.

Edited by Losirene Lacanivalu

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