Magistrate Omar Jabang

(JollofNews) – A local magistrate in the Gambia has sentenced a 40-year-old man for raping and impregnating a 14-year-old girl.

Malang Tendeng of Mariama Kunda village, West Coast Region, Weston Division, is said to have lured the girl into his bedroom and forced himself on to her in February this year, resulting in her pregnancy.

Prosecutors said the girl had tried to fight off Tendeng but he overpowered her and used his hands to cover her mouth to stop her screaming before proceeding to forcefully rip off her clothes and having sex without her consent.

Prosecutors added when he finished with the girl, Tendeng threatened to kill her if she tells anyone about the rape.

They added that believing that Tendeng would make true his threat, the teenager failed to tell her parents until a few months later when her mum made the shocking discovery that she is pregnant.

“It was only after she was confronted by her mum that the teenager opened up to her mum and told her everything,” said Police Prosecutor ASP Singhateh.

The parents later reported the police who obtained a statement from the teenager before taking her to Sukuta Health Centre, where nurses confirmed that she was five months pregnant.

Prosecutors said Tendeng had denied having sex with the girl and being responsible for the pregnancy.

He also pleaded not guilty to the charges in court.

But in his verdict, Magistrate Omar Jabang of the Brusubi court said although Tendeng had denied the allegations, he has looked at the totality of the evidence produced in court including the teenager’s statement to the police and is satisfied that the prosecution have proved the case beyond any reasonable doubt.

He said the offence is a serious one as it involved a 40-year-old bloke and a child who is now five month pregnant.

“We don’t know whether she will have a successful delivery and even if she does, she will live with a big scar for the rest of her life,” he said.

“The act of the accused is callous and very evil and must be met with the full arm of the law to send signals that courts will not stand and watch whilst the cream of our society, especially girls, are destroyed by the people who are supposed to protect them.”

Despite Tendeng’s plea for the magistrate to temper justice with mercy, he was sentenced accordingly by the magistrate.