From the Courts
October 5, 2007

Fisherman gets 14 years for incest

Standing firm on his promise that he isn’t going to tolerate any nonsense in his courtroom, Justice Frederick Bruce-Lyle sentenced a fisherman to 14 years behind bars, after a nine-member jury found him guilty of incest, following approximately 30 minutes of deliberation.{{more}}

The man was accused of having sex with his daughter between July 1 and September 3 last year.

“This is a serious offence. The prevalence of this is becoming too alarming,” said the High Court judge.

Justice Bruce-Lyle added that it was sad that the girl trusted her father and he did this. “I can’t understand how a father can jump on his daughter and use her as a sex object,” he said.

The courtroom had to be emptied before the petite girl could take the witness stand to give her evidence.

She told the court that at the time of the incident, she was living with her father and relatives. She said she slept under a chair in the living room alongside her father.

Describing the night in question, she said: “I was sleeping under the chair when he touched my (private parts) and I told him a father would not do his child like that.” She added that her father went outside and she fell back to sleep. “After he came back, I felt him taking off my underwear and I was crying,” she said.

The girl recounted that her father then had sex with her.

She stated that it was not the first time her father had done something like that to her and she was afraid to tell anyone about it.

It was not until she went to her aunt’s home that she told her aunt what transpired that night.

Representing himself, the father told the court that his daughter was lying and that he never did such a thing.

He said that while he was overseas two years ago, he had heard some news about his daughter’s behaviour and had returned home to be with her. He said that he had given his daughter money to buy school supplies in Kingstown and that she did not tell him that she was going to visit her aunt. He said he got very upset and told her he was going to beat her.

The man was adamant that he never had sex with his daughter, and was baffled as to why she would say such a thing.

When he questioned her as to why she said that he had had sex with her, the girl replied, “It was because I had enough and I couldn’t take it anymore.”