A 63 year-old man has been sentenced to nine years in jail recently after he sexually abused his seven year-old grand-daughter in Isabel back in 2017.
The man who cannot be named to protect the identity of the Complainant/Victim was convicted after a trial of one count of sexual intercourse with a child under 15.
The defendant was 59 years old and the Complainant was only 7 years old at the time of the offence.
The offence occurred on 1 March 2017 at a Conservation Beach, Isabel Province.
Maximum Penalty for this offence under section 139 (1) (a) of the Penal Code (Amendment) (Sexual Offence) Act 2016 is life imprisonment.
Justice Leonard Maina when sentencing the defendant said it appears from the cases of this type that came before the High Court that the starting point of sentence in the range of 8 years and it is appropriate for this Defendant.
“With the sentences of the sexual intercourse with a child under 15 years, the court have expressed concerns on the arising number of such cases and in particular the case of sexual intercourse regularly coming to the court,” Justice Maina said.
“I would say it is also common with girl victims of under 15 years and it is common all over this country,” he added.
Justice Maina then told the defendant that he is in the position of trust as a grandfather but decided to abuse that trust and had sexual intercourse with his granddaughter.
“It is worse as the age disparity is 52 years as you were 63 years and the Victim was 7 years old at the time of the offence.”
He then described the sexual acts the defendant committed on his granddaughter which he said would be would be harmful to her and may have passed on sickness to her.
“This above comment may sound funny or jokey but the concern here is that the Defendant’s act with the way of sexual intercourse with her granddaughter is serious and ridiculous.”
“On that, the Court must not take it lightly when dealing with the sentencing with the offender of this nature.
“As a granduncle or grandfather as commonly referred to in our places, you are required by your people to take all the responsibilities, and ensure the care of the child or whenever you were there.
“However, you decided to abuse that trust,” Justice Maina told the defendant.
“An abuse of trust in the sexual act is against not only the law but also a bad behaviour or attitude in the communities and also a shameful thing on you and your people.”
The time the defendant spent in custody was ordered to be deducted from the nine years jail term.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN
Solomon Star, Honiara