Court News

Pastor Denies Rape Charges, Accuses Complainant Of Lying

He added that the complainant would have had a grudge against him since he had told her mother to take away her mobile phone and accompany everywhere.
15 Dec 2020 12:26
Pastor Denies Rape Charges, Accuses Complainant Of Lying

A pastor on rape charges denied all allegations, telling the court that the complainant had lied about the alleged incidents.

Ravinesh Chand, who is charged with three counts of rape and one count of sexual assault appeared before judge Justice Daniel.

For the offence of sexual assault, it is alleged that on March 21, 2019,  Chand at Nausori, performed sexual acts on the complainant.

For the offences of rape, it is alleged that he then raped her. The complainant was a member of the Hindi Christian Fellowship Mission Church.

The state prosecutor is Swastika Sharma from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions while Chand is now represented by Iqbal Khan. Chand told the court that on the day of the alleged incident, he had returned from Labasa on the 2.30pm flight and went to his house where he met the church members asking to arrange a birthday party for the complainant as she came from a poor family.

He told the court that he had picked the complainant from her house and had asked her mother to accompany them, but, she denied.

He testified that he dropped the complainant to the cake shop and gave her $40 to buy a cake and wait for him to pick her.

Chand told the court that he picked her up and dropped her at the Church in Sawani. He claimed that after that day, he did not hear from the complainant’s family.  He said that on March 23, 2019, he saw Police officers at his house and was told of the allegations against him when he went to the Nausori Police Station.

Chand claimed that he was told by the Police officers that they were being pressured by the Women’s Crisis Centre and the Prime Minister’s Office to lay charges against him. He claimed that he never molested the complainant nor did he rape her and that everything claimed by the complainant was a lie.

Chand also claimed that on past occasions, he and some other church members had counselled the complainant after her mother had complained about her going out with a boy and having love bites.

He added that the complainant would have had a grudge against him since he had told her mother to take away her mobile phone and accompany everywhere.

Meanwhile, the senior scientific officer for Forensic bio and DNA lab, Naomi Tuitoga told the court that preliminary analysis showed that there was no foreign DNA present on the oral swabs and clothing exhibits of the victim apart from her own and the results had come out negative.


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.




Valentine Promo Poster


Tower Insurance
Total
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper