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The 35-year-old man who was jailed, on Monday, for forcing a 4-year-old girl to perform fellatio on him received 40% of the maximum sentence and not 80%, as earlier reporting might have suggested.

On Monday, the man appeared before the Family Court and pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault on the child, committed between Dec. 31, 2019 and Jan. 1, 2021, and on Dec. 29, 2021, respectively

This means that since the offences were committed on different days, the man could have been sentenced to a maximum of five years on each count. 

Family Court sittings are held in camera, meaning that the media and the general public are not permitted to attend the hearings.

However, neither the court, the prosecution, nor the police briefs the media or the public on the outcome of matters of public interest heard before that court. 

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iWitness News was reliably informed, on Monday, that the man was sentenced to four years in prison — a sentence that outraged the public.

However, it later became clear that the four-year sentence was an aggregate out of a maximum of 10 years — as the man was sentenced to two years on each count.

Based on sentencing guidelines handed down by the Court of Appeal, defendants who plead guilty to an offence at the first opportunity to do so are entitled to a maximum discount of one-third  of the sentence that the court is considering handing down.

However, that discount could be reduced by aggravating features of the offence and/or the offender — things that the court considers make the offence worse  — such as breach of the trust that exist between a child and the offending adult or the child’s parents and the offending adult. 

The discount could also be increased because of mitigating features — elements that reduce the severity of the crime in the eyes of the court.

Youth and an absence of criminal record are among the main mitigating features often considered by the court.

The absence of a criminal record could mean that it is the first offence that a defendant has committed an offence, or that they have not reoffended during the period of rehabilitation, as spelt out by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act — which can vary from five to 10 years.

However, it is not clear what are the aggravating and mitigating features that the court considered in the extant case. 

One of the things that the court might have considered is that the child could have been as young as two years old the first time that the offence was committed against her.

The public has responded with outrage at the outcome of the case, and many people have used the media to call for an increase in the sentences for sex crimes, especially those committed against minors. 

However, if people are to face stiffer penalties for sex crimes, in light of guidelines that judges and magistrate must follow, Parliament would have to change the law to increase the penalties for sexual offences, as has been done with gun crimes and marijuana possession over the last 20 years. 

Other media outlets have disclosed the relationship between the child and the man who is from Sion Hill but lives in Mesopotamia.

iWitness News is, therefore, not publishing his name and photograph, so as to avoid contributing to identifying the victim, an offence under the Family Court Act.  

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One reply on “UPDATE: Man in child porn video got 4 out of 10 years maximum in jail”

  1. Avatar Of Nancysauldemersnancysauldemers says:

    I don’t know which is more heinous – the truly sick acts committed by the offender or the way the offender’s behaviour has been treated by the so-called justice system. I say treated because the sentence imposed can surely not be labeled “punishment” suiting the crime. Each time one of these offenses result in such a minor sentences – merely a slap on the wrist, the court system contributes to rape culture in this nation.

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