A man who pleaded guilty to having sexual intercourse with a 12 year-old girl has been committed to the High Court for sentencing.
Principal Magistrate Jim Seuika said since the Magistrates’ Court does not have the jurisdiction for the charge of defilement of a girl less than 13 years, it is only right that the matter is committed to the High Court.
He therefore committed the matter for sentencing at the High Court on a date to be fixed by the High Court.
The accused was further remanded in custody awaiting a date to appear in the High Court.
The maximum penalty for rape is life imprisonment while defilement carries the maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment.
The 21-year-old man who cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim committed the offence in 2014 at a village in Lord Howe, Malaita Outer Islands.
He was initially charged with a rape charge but the charge was later reduced to that of defilement.
The victim was 12 years of age at the time.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN