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142 accused rapists seek legal assistance

Repeka Nasiko
Tuesday, December 05, 2017

THE Legal Aid Commission has received 142 applications this year from accused persons facing rape charges.

Legal Aid lawyer Litiana Volau revealed these statistics while highlighting the increase in sex crimes handled by the commission at the Sex Crimes in Fiji workshop in Lautoka on Saturday.

"We received about 136 applications for rape cases in 2016 and 142 applications from alleged offenders in 2017 who wished to engage our services.

"All of these were rape cases," she said.

"We received 130 applications in 2016 and 145 applications from January to the end of November of indecent assault cases, which includes indecently annoying a female."

She added that the commission also received 39 applications so far this year compared with 36 applications in 2016 for defilement cases.

Ms Volau said the commission had a high number of active cases of sex related crimes or offenses.

"There are files that are active and are still being handled by Legal Aid between the years of 2009 and 2017.

"The commission is currently representing about 200 rape cases on behalf of the accused persons. In relation to attempted rape we have about 45 cases.

"In relation to indecent assault and annoying a female we have about 140 files and 96 files in relation to the offence of defilement."

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