Omar Jabang of the Brusubi Magistrates’ Court recently convicted and sentenced
one Malang Tending to 10 years in prison with hard labour after he was found
guilty of defiling a 14-year-old girl.
The prosecution alleged that the accused sometime in the month of February 2017, at Mariama Kunda village in West Coast Region, had unlawful carnal knowledge of a girl under the age of 18 years.
On 7 August 2017, the case was mentioned and the accused pleaded not guilty to the charge and the prosecution led by ASP Singhateh called the victim to open the case for prosecution.
The victim testified detailing how she was invited by the accused to his house and upon arrival, the accused dragged her into his bedroom, grabbed her mouth, undressed her and forcefully had sex with her.
The victim further testified that the accused threatened to kill her if she should tell her mother about the incident.
The victim said she kept quiet until her pregnancy surfaces and her mother confronted her and she then confessed that it was the accused that had intercourse with her.
The matter was then reported to the police and the child victim was taken to Sukuta Health Centre where it was confirmed that she was five-month pregnant and a medical certificate was issued to that effect.
The said certificate was admitted in evidence and marked as Exhibit A and when the medical certificate was being tendered, the accused changed his plea from not guilty to guilty plea.
The prosecution at this juncture, furnished the court with the facts of the case, together with the testimony of the child victim and the accused accepted the facts and testimony of the victim.
In the course of giving the facts, the accused person’s cautionary and voluntary statements were admitted in evidence and marked as Exhibit B and C, respectively.
In sentencing the accused after he begged for forgiveness, the presiding magistrate, Omar Jabang, disclosed that he took consideration that the accused person was a first-time offender and he is minded to temper justice with mercy noting that the offence is a serious one.
He declared that justice is not only considered on the side of an accused or convict but that the victims also deserved justice.
The trial magistrate said the child victim is 14 years old and the accused is a 40-year-old man, adding that the accused can be the father of the victim.
The trial magistrate further said the child victim is five-month pregnant,
“We don’t know whether she will have a successful delivery; she will leave with the scar for the rest of her life; the act of the accused is callous and very evil and must be met with the full arm of the law to send signals that courts will not stand and watch whilst the cream of our society, especially girls, are destroyed by the people who are supposed to protect them,” he said.
Magistrate Jabang disclosed that the offence of defilement attracts the punishment of 14 years in prison and he accordingly sentenced the accused to 10-year imprisonment.