A 58-year-old man convicted for raping a 14-year-old girl in a village in Tailevu has been jailed for 13 years by Judge Justice Daniel Goundar in the Suva High Court.
While delivering the sentence, Justice Goundar said in November 2018, the girl was alone at home as her father and brother had gone out to their farm while her grandmother was at work.
It was heard in court that the victim was raised by her father and paternal grandmother after her mother left the matrimonial home when she was 2-years-old.
Justice Goundar said the offender entered her home uninvited and when he saw the victim lying on a bed, he covered her mouth with a pillow to prevent her from raising alarm and raped her.
The offender was the father’s uncle.
He was her grandfather and frequently visited her home as they were neighbours.
The Judge said in her evidence the victim described the experience as painful and traumatic.
He said the girl highlighted in her evidence that the grandfather threatened to strike her with a cane knife if she complained to anyone.
The girl said she was scared and afraid and that after the man left, she sat on her bed and cried.
Justice Goundar said the offender breached the victim’s trust and caused significant physical and emotional harm to her.
Justice Goundar said other aggravating factors are that the victim was a child, she was raped in her home, a pillow was pressed on her face to stop her from raising alarm and the offender threatened to harm the victim with a cane knife if she complained.
The Judge also highlighted that the offender has expressed a little remorse for his action.
He also said the only mitigating factor is that the offender has previous good character.
Justice Goundar has also issued a domestic violence restraining order with no contact and non-molestation conditions to protect the victim.
The Judge said the offender shall be subject to this order for the rest of his life.
A non-parole period of 10 years has been set.
Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations