Judiciary of Sierra Leone Communications, Main Law Courts Building in Freetown, 13th December 2021: Court of Appeal Judge Honourable Justice Alhaji Momoh-Jah Stevens (JA) presiding over cases at the Sexual Offences Model Court in Freetown has sentenced 18-year-old Derick Moses and 19-year-old Peter Samura, to ten 10 years’ imprisonment each for sexually penetrating two girls below the age of 18.
Both convicts were before the Court on a one-count indictment each of Sexual Penetration Contrary to Section 19 of the Sexual Offences Act 2012, Act NO. 12 of 2012, as repealed and replaced by Section 4 (a) (ii) of the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2019, Act NO. 8 of 2019.
The convicts (Derick and Peter) denied the allegation upon their arraignment before the Court.
State Prosecutor, Musa Pious Sesay, made an Application for trial by judge alone instead of judge and jury which was granted by the judge.
According to the particulars of the offence, Derick Moses, on the 14th day of March 2021, at Freetown in the Western Area of the Republic of Sierra Leone engaged in an act of sexual penetration with a child.
In her statement to the police, 15-year-old victim, Salamatu Sungai (not real name) recognized Derick as her friend and church member who forcefully sexually penetrated her while she was alone at home.
Before his change of plea, a number of witnesses were led in evidence in support of the Prosecution’s case.
Having listened to the guilty plea of the accused, Hon. Justice Stevens noted that, “the accused has made a confessional statement and in our jurisprudence, as long as the said confessional statement is voluntary, there’s no need for further proof. I hold that the accused is as guilty as charged.”
In his allocutus, the convict pleaded for mercy and was sentenced to ten (10) years imprisonment.
Peter Samura was also alleged to have engaged in an act of sexual penetration with a child within the Western Area of the Republic of Sierra Leone between the 1st and the 31st day of February 2021.
In her statement to the police, the 17-year-old victim referred to the accused as her boyfriend with whom she’s been in a relationship for the past four years.
“He is my boyfriend and we have been in this relationship for 4 years,” the victim told the Court, adding that, “he vaginated me.”
She said she was discussing with one of her neighbours how her boyfriend vaginated her. During the discussion, her elder sister overheard every detail of her explanation.
Few minutes later, she said she was asked to identify the perpetrator, but she refused and was beaten by her father before she finally disclosed the identity of her boyfriend (accused).
Before his change of plea, a number of witnesses were led in evidence.
Delivering his judgement, Hon. Justice Alhaji Momoh-Jah Stevens noted that, “once a confessional statement was made voluntarily, there’s no need for further proof. The Prosecution has proven its case. The accused is as guilty as charged.”
The convict (Samura) was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment.
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