Judge Sends “Strong Message” to Would-be Offenders
GUYANA — A 24-year-old man was sentenced to life on Monday for raping a three-year-old girl whom his family was taking care of. He was 22 at the time of the crime.
The child was entrusted by her mother into the care of the convict’s family.
The sentence was handed down on Yoganand Ramnarine of Number 60 Village, Corentyne, Berbice, by Justice Jo Ann Barlow at the Berbice Assizes.
Ramnarine maintained his innocence up to the time of sentencing and wept as his punishment was handed down.
Prior to the sentencing the victim’s mother had told the court that her daughter, who is now five, cannot recall the incident and is living a normal life.
However, the judge, reminded the prisoner of parts of the evidence which had revealed that the three-year-old child was entrusted to his family, while her mother went to face a bereavement in hers.
The Stabroek News quoted the judge as saying: “The child was trembling and crying , when she was seen. Such a traumatic experience. I cannot condone … The court is the society’s voice, and it is sending a strong message to would-be offenders. You will not be eligible for parole until you would have served 25 years of the sentence. You are to display to society that you have been changed.”
The judge added: “It is the order of this court, that the prison establishment provide facilities for counseling, so you can be relieved of whatever ills you may have in you. Further, from your manner of speaking, you are not illiterate. It is the order of this court that you must be exposed to learning facilities, so if you are released, you can make a meaningful contribution to the society.”
The particulars of the offence stated that on April 17, 2015, at Number 60 Village, Corentyne, Berbice, he engaged in sexual penetration of a girl under 16 years old.
The case was heard in-camera.