Step­fa­ther de­nies rape of 16-year-old

Fiji Sun - - Comment - FONUA TALEI Edited by Ru­si­ate Mataika

Astep­fa­ther pleaded not guilty in the Suva High Court yes­ter­day to four counts of rape and four counts of sex­ual as­sault.

The al­leged in­ci­dents hap­pened be­tween May and June this year in Vatuwaqa.

The ac­cused ap­peared be­fore Judge Jus­tice RiyazHamza rep­re­sented by Le­gal Aid lawyer Nam­rata Mishra.

It was re­vealed in court that the al­leged vic­tim is the ac­cused’s 16-year-old step­daugh­ter. State lawyer Kim­ber­ley Semisi said that there were no ad­mis­sions in the ac­cused’s cau­tion in­ter­view.

Ms Mishra said the de­fence would be fil­ing an af­fi­davit in re­sponse to the State’s op­po­si­tion in re­gard to her client’s bail ap­pli­ca­tion.

Jus­tice Hamza said the court was not in­clined to grant bail for the ac­cused be­cause of the na­ture of the of­fence. How­ever he said that it would not prej­u­dice the ac­cused per­son’s bail ap­pli­ca­tion in any way.

The court noted that the ac­cused had been in remand since July 7 when he was ar­rested by po­lice.

The case has been ad­journed to De­cem­ber 5 to check on the pro­posed agreed facts of the case.

The ac­cused was fur­ther re­manded in cus­tody.

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