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Father gets 14 year jail term for raping, impregnating daughter in Bayelsa

 

 

The Bayelsa State High Court, sitting in Yenagoa has sentenced a 41 year old father, Baridapsi Needam, to 14 years imprisonment for raping and impregnating his daughter.

The victim gave birth to a baby girl in pendency of the trial.

The Bayelsa Commissioner of Justice and Attorney-General, Mr. Briyal Dambo, in the suit numbered YHC/14C/2022 charged the accused with the offence of rape contrary to Section 1(1) of the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Law of Bayelsa State, 2021.

The State Prosecuting Counsel and Deputy Director in the Bayelsa State Ministry of Justice, Pere Amanda Egbuson, told the court that investigations revealed that the accused , Needam began defiling his daughter since she was seven years old by inserting his fingers into her vagina, and started having sex with her in 2020 until she got pregnant in 2022.

The Presiding Judge, Justice D.E Adokeme, while delivering the judgement stated that the prosecution led credible evidence and made reference to the DNA result which revealed 99.99 per cent positive report that the convict is the father of the child.

The court ruled that the prosecution has proved its case beyond reasonable doubt that Needam committed the offence of rape and sentenced him to 14 years imprisonment.

Speaking after the judgement, the lead prosecuting counsel, Egbuson, Deputy Director in the Bayelsa State Ministry of Justice, noted that the judgement will serve as a deterrent to others who engage in such unimaginable act, while noting that a strong message has been sent that the court will not tolerate such heinous acts.

She thanked the Honourable Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Biriyai Dambo SAN for his immense support in ensuring that the DNA analysis was carried out to aid the prosecution in pursuit of justice in the case.

Reacting to the development, a renowned advocate against Violence against women and founder of Do Foundation, Dr Dise Ogbise-Goddy Harry, said the CSOs in the state are excited with the judgement of the court.

“The State Government through the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Women Affairs ,Children Affairs and Social Development and the Bayelsa State Gender Response Initiative Team has done well by keeping the victim safe and the innocent baby safe too. This should sound as a warning to all paedophiles to steer clear of our children” she said

The convicted Needman, was reported to the Police by members of the State Gender Advocacy group, Gender Response Initiative Team (GRIT) in 2022 when a concerned neighbour noticed that the victim was five months pregnant and that the father was responsible for the pregnancy.

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