Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News
A 28 year-old man was granted $70,000 bail of which $10,000 is cash and $60,000 signed surety after he was accused of raping and indecently assaulting a 13 year-old girl at his home on Tortola. The accused was also ordered by the court to report to the Road Town Police Station three days per week, surrender his travel documents and have no contact with the minor and her family.
The teenager and her siblings are considered to be family friends of the man and would spend weekends at the defendant's home where his mother usually took care of them.
The accused, a security guard for the Customs Department who has a child underway, was not allowed to plead to the indictable charges of two counts of rape, two counts of indecent assault and unlawful sexual intercourse with a girl under the age of 16 year old. The incidents are said to have taken place in May of this year.
His lawyer, Richard Rowe told the court that his client has a girlfriend who is eight months pregnant.
Principal Crown Counsel Tiffany Scatliffe said the virtual complainant, who is 13 years old, lives with her father and other siblings. She said they are accustomed to visiting the defendant's home where his mother would provide them with food and assistance as they prepare for the upcoming school year, when their father couldn't provide for them.
Scatliffe said the minor considers herself as being related to the defendant and his mother.
The Prosecutor told the court that at times, the minor and her siblings would spend weekends at the home and sometime in May around 3:00 am, she was on the defendant's computer on Facebook while he was playing a video game. During this time, it is alleged that the defendant asked the minor when is he "going to get this thing." The minor, who ignored him, eventually made attempts to leave the room but was barred by the defendant despite her pleas. It is alleged that he forced her to perform oral sex on him and then raped her.
The other incidents are alleged to have occurred during the late part of May, including the time around Music Fest.
Scatliffe said the minor said she did not tell anyone what occurred out of fear. According to the minor, that would have also meant that her siblings would no longer be fed or assisted for school since they would have been forced to leave the house and not return.
The court heard that in June, the minor and her siblings went to spend summer at a friend's house and the mother told them that they must not be afraid to say when something happens to them. This prompted the minor to tell someone and the matter was reported to the Police in July and an investigation was launched.
Scatliffe said during an audio/video Police interview, the defendant denied the allegations.
The accused will return to court on October 19.