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Court frees suspect

Shalveen Chand
Saturday, June 07, 2014

A MAN accused of rape was acquitted yesterday by the High Court in Suva a day after assessors returned with a unanimous guilty opinion.

Samuela Tuivesi was charged with a count of rape which he allegedly committed on February 5, 2011. The court was told he allegedly threatened to evict the complainant's family if she refused to have sex with him.

Justice Janaka Bandara said the prosecution's case was that on the said day, the accused and others were drinking alcohol when the accused saw the complainant and called her to where they were drinking.

He said according to the prosecution, Mr Tuivesi threatened the complainant with eviction and then raped her under a wooden house.

Justice Bandara said after assessing the evidence, it was clear the prosecution had not been able to prove the guilt of the accused.

He said the alleged incident took place in a crowded settlement and the girl didn't raise any alarm. He said the matter was only reported to the police after her uncle had questioned her on rumours that she had been having gang sex with men from the area.

Mr Tuivesi was acquitted and told he was a free man.

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