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Judicial CP - October 2003

Corpun file 12346

The Herald, Harare, 30 October 2003

Juvenile rapist to be caned

By Joseph Katete

A Form Three pupil at Zengeza 4 High School will be lashed as punishment after a Chitungwiza regional court on Monday found him guilty of raping two minors aged six and seven last year.

The 15-year-old juvenile was sentenced to receive five strokes of the cane at Harare Remand Prison.

In addition, the boy was sentenced to two years in jail but this was wholly suspended for five years during which period he would not be expected to commit any crime of a sexual nature.

Chitungwiza regional magistrate Mr William Bhila said were it not for his age, the teenager would have been gaoled.

"If you were 16, 17 or above I would have jailed you but because of the fact that at the time you committed the offence you were 14 and still a minor, I had to consider an alternative," he said.

However, he said that he hoped the sentence would serve its purpose of acting as a correctional punishment.

Mr Bhila said he had also taken into consideration the plea by the Chitungwiza probation office that the teenager be excused from a jail term because of his age.

But he said the boy's age and report from the probation office did not take away the seriousness of the offence.

"You caused trauma to these young girls that will haunt them for the rest of their lives and you should at least show remorse for the crime," said Mr Bhila.

The juvenile lured two girls aged six and seven with some apples and masawu fruits on July 6 last year and called them to his parent's house.

The girls were in the company of a young boy.

He then took the two girls to a paw paw tree and asked them to remove their undergarments before raping them.

The young boy who had accompanied the girls was watching from a distance and reported the matter to his mother.

His mother in turn reported the matter to police and the teenager was arrested.

A medical report compiled at Chitungwiza General Hospital confirmed that penetration was effected on the two girls.

Mr Felix Matsinde prosecuted.

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