Ex-Po­lice of­fi­cer ac­quit­ted of rape and in­de­cent as­sault

Fiji Sun - - Nation - JES­SICA GOUNDER Edited by Jonathan Bryce Feed­back: jes­sica.gounder@fi­jisun.com.fj

Ajudge in the High Court in Suva yes­ter­day ac­quit­ted a for­mer Po­lice of­fi­cer of rape and in­de­cent as­sault. This was af­ter sev­eral in­con­sis­ten­cies were recog­nised by the de­fence. Jus­tice Achala Wen­gap­puli said the mother, in cross-ex­am­i­na­tion, said that she had only com­plained of rape be­cause their rep­u­ta­tion was at stake, which cre­ated rea­son­able doubt in the prose­cu­tion’s case. The 37-year-old man was al­leged to have raped a girl in the com­mu­nity he was sta­tioned in, as a spe­cial con­sta­ble on Fe­bru­ary 13, 2015.

The ac­cused had tes­ti­fied in court that he had a re­la­tion­ship with the girl for the past three months be­fore the in­ci­dent and were so close that they were in a sex­ual re­la­tion­ship. He had also in­formed the court that he was not aware that the girl was 15-years-old. The as­ses­sors had found the ac­cused not guilty af­ter a week’s trial.

Jus­tice Wen­gap­puli said: “I con­cur with the as­ses­sor’s opin­ion and ac­quit the ac­cused of rape and in­de­cent as­sault.”

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