A YOUNG man charged with abduction and two counts of rape was acquitted by the High Court in Suva just hours after assessors gave a guilty opinion.
Ronald Chand was acquitted and declared a free man by Justice Paul Madigan who in his ruling said the 16-year-old girl met the accused on September 30, 2011, and went with him by herself to meet Mr Chand's mother.
Justice Madigan said the charge is abduction with intent to have carnal knowledge but the evidence shows Mr Chand did not have any such intention, therefore, the court acquitted him.
"The evidence from the two rape counts from the complainant is implausible. The circumstances what she says was her captivity are not borne by other evidence. I don't believe she was kept locked in a room for five days," said Justice Madigan.
"In that the complainant lacked credibility on many matters, I cannot be sure that her evidence of the two episodes of rape as she describes them can be true. In the premises, therefore, there is no proof of the matters beyond reasonable doubt and I must find him not guilty on both counts of rape."