Murder accused while on bail, committed sex crimes sentenced to jail

A man was sentenced this week for committing sex crimes against an underaged girl while he was on bail for allegedly causing the death of a father-of-six. 

Paulo Mika was sentenced on sex crimes this week. The 25-year-old accused from Samalaeulu had previously been charged in relation to an incident that led to the death of a 38-year-old man from the same village.

He appeared in court on Wednesday for sentencing on three other charges of sexual connection and one count of indecent assault involving a 13-year-old girl. 

His sentencing was handed down by Supreme Court Justice, Leiataualesa Darryl Clarke this week. 

According to the Police summary of facts, the accused had sex with the minor on three separate occasions. 

“In that month of February 2020 you then left with the victim to Afega to your cousin’s family. The police then found the victim at Afega with you. Your offending came to light when the police were informed that the victim was missing,” said Justice Leiataualesa during sentencing. 

The Judge accepted as a mitigating factor in sentencing that the accused appeared genuinely remorseful for the offence and took into account the reconciliation carried out by his family on his behalf given he has been in custody.  

“Paulo, you are 25 years of age,” the Judge said. 

“You have taken advantage of a young 13 year old girl when you were on bail for murder. In her victim impact report, the victim speaks of her remorse for what happened and I expect shame for what she was involved in with you. 

“As has often been said, this law is there to protect young girls from mature men taking advantage of them. 

“It is also there to protect young girls from making rash decisions and from getting into trouble.” 

Ultimately the defendant was sentenced to 10 months in jail. 

“On a final note, [the] prosecution in the summary of facts did not include as a relevant factor when the accused committed this offending, he was on bail for murder,” the Judge said. 

“Such a fact not disputed by the accused’s counsel or by the accused himself when he appeared before me on the 16th March 2020 should be set out by prosecution in the summaries facts filed with the Court.

“All relevant and mitigating factors of the offending should be set out by the prosecution in summaries of facts filed with the Court, as that informs the setting of the start point for sentence.”

Mika and three other defendants were alleged to have been involved in an incident last August, which led to the injury and death Sauiluma Kasiano. 

The sentencing status of the other case is not known. 

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