July 1, 2021
By Ibrahim Kabba Turay
Justices Momoh Jah Stevens, presiding at the Siaka Steven Street High Court, has yesterday sentenced one Joseph Lamin to life imprisonment after finding him guilty of sexually abusing an 8 year-old child.
Lamin was before the court on one count of sexual penetration, contrary to Section 19 of the Sexual Offences Act No 12 of 2012, as repealed and replaced by Section 4 of the Sexual Offense (Amendment) Act of 2019 Act No. 8 of 2019.
The convict on 28th of July, 2020, in Freetown, engaged in an act of sexual penetration with a child below the age of eighteen.
While ruling on the matter, Justice Stevens said the convict had pleaded not guilty to the offence as charged, adding that the prosecution had applied that the convict be tried by judge alone.
He added that the court granted the said application and that the prosecution led four witnesses against the accused person, including the parents of the victim.
Justice Stevens stated that there was a clear case of corroboration that the allegation made against the convict was true.
He said after the prosecution closed its case, the convict was asked as to how he might want to testify, and that he chose to rely on his statement he made to the police.
Justices Stevens said the victim in her testimony in court said the convict attacked her when she went out to urinate and he held her mouth tight and penetrated her.
He said the convict in his statement to the police said he was at the victim’s residence to steal a phone, but was not involved in the act of penetrating the victim.
“I submit that the prosecution has proven its case beyond reasonable doubt. The accused is therefore guilty of sexual penetration. He is therefore sentenced to life imprisonment,” he ruled.
Meanwhile, Lamin has been the fifth person to be bitten by the emergency declared by President Bio on sexual violence. A school teacher was also convicted of sexual penetration and eventually sentenced to life imprisonment.