NATION

Rapist Sentenced To 12 Years, And Eight Months

A 54-year-old Tailevu man was sentenced to 12 years and eight months imprison­ment yesterday after he was con­victed of one count of rape. The accused was alleged to have raped
01 Jun 2018 10:08
Rapist Sentenced To 12 Years, And Eight Months

A 54-year-old Tailevu man was sentenced to 12 years and eight months imprison­ment yesterday after he was con­victed of one count of rape.

The accused was alleged to have raped his 17-year-old niece inside his house on February 2, 2017.

The alleged incident happened in a village in Tailevu.

He was found guilty by all three assessors and the decision was up­held by High Court judge Justice Thushara Rajasinghe yesterday.

State lawyer Taitusi Tuenuku ap­peared for the prosecution while Legal Aid Commission lawyer Swarvana Prakash represented the accused. While delivering his sen­tence Justice Rajasinghe said he considered the offence as very seri­ous and the sentence was based on the principle of deterrence.

He said he took into account the age difference between the accused and his niece and also her victim impact report.

Justice Rajasinghe said the level of harm in the case was substan­tially high, including the degree of culpability.

He said the accused committed the crime on his niece when she went to buy ice block from him after which he invited her into his home to help him recharge his mobile phone.

He said the accused was alone and was in a vulnerable situation and had no prospect of escaping dur­ing the act. The Court heard that he then gave her his mobile phone to have and told her to go to him if she ever needed anything.

Justice Rajasinghe said the aggra­vating factors of the case were that the accused had abused his niece’s trust to satisfy his sexual desire.

He said by committing the crime the accused denied the victim a normal and matured growth to adulthood.

The accused has been ordered to serve a minimum of 10 years and eight months imprisonment before he can be eligible for parole.

A permanent Domestic Violence Restraining Order was also im­posed by the Court with standard non-molestation and no contact or­ders.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce

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