On Friday morning, Justice Cottle laid down a 15 year sentence to 55 year old George Mc Donald of Overland for the rape of his 10 year old niece.

Mc Donald was charged on two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 13. He was sentenced to 10 years on one count and 5 years on the other.  These sentences would run consecutively.

During mitigation, the lawyer for the defendant, Ronnie Marks, requested a light sentence based on the fact that the defendant had no previous convictions. He also referred to the defendant’s family in an effort to aid in mitigating for a lighter sentence.

The facts before the court were that the virtual complainant was left in the care of her uncle who then sexually assaulted her during that time. The child told the court that her uncle pushed her on the bed and told her to “shut up”.

On the second encounter, the child’s grandmother sent her to borrow a cutlass from the uncle, it was during this time that the uncle again sexually assaulted the child.

During the trial, the judge assessed the mitigating factors in contrast to aggravating factors. He added that the rape of a child is vile and stated that legislation allows for a life sentence in such cases.

However, in assessing an appropriate sentence, Justice Cottle stated that due to the seriousness of the offence, 15 years imprisonment would be the starter. He then handed down the 15 year sentence.

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