A 26-year-old man has been jailed for four years and eight months after he was convicted for one count of sexual connection, and two counts of indecent acts against an 11-year-old boy.
The name of the accused man has been suppressed to protect his victim’s identity.
The accused appeared for sentence before Justice Mata Tuatagaloa.
Lawyer Fuifui Ioane appeared on behalf of the National Prosecution Office while Pa’u Tafaogaolupe Mulitalo represented the defendant.
The accused was not a first offender.
The Court heard from the Probation Officer that he was convicted and placed under probation for two years for burglary and theft in 2008.
He was also convicted in 2009 over the possession of narcotics.
According to the police summary of facts, the accused met the boy on the road when he returned from the village shop on 30 July 2016 at 6:30pm.
The defendant took the victim to an abandoned area where he sexually assaulted him. This was until the victim’s cousin arrived at the scene. The defendant took off.
The matter was reported to Police that day.
In Court, the defendant rejected that he forced the victim into what happened.
“We both agreed to what we did,” he said.
But Justice Tuatagaloa was not convinced.
“Whether he agreed or not he is young and our laws are to protect the young children and young victims,” she responded.
Justice Tuatagaloa said what he did was very serious, especially the fact he forced him to the area where he assaulted him.
“You are 15 years older than the victim. The older the defendant the higher the penalty will be.”
In delivering sentence, Police recommended 12 years as a starting point but the Court started with six.
In the end, the accused was convicted and sentenced to four years and eight months. He was jailed 18 months for each charge of indecent assault.
Justice Tuatagaloa ordered that anytime he spent in custody to be deducted and all penalties are to be served concurrently.