A man was ordered to serve 10 years and eight months behind bars for raping four students in two different criminal cases.
The sentences imposed on the two criminal cases were made concurrent with each other.
The man who could not be named for safety reasons had his sentence backdated to February 24, 2019 when he was firstly taken to custody.
Justice Oliver Saksak said the first case involved the defendant abusing a 13-year-old girl back in 2006.
Mr. Saksak said the man sent the girl to a nakamal, followed her there, abused and raped her but the defendant was lucky he was not charged with sexual intercourse without consent in this case – he pleaded guilty to one count of act of indecency and his sentence reflected that charge.
He was sent to prison to two years and eight months in prison as his final sentence in this case.
The Supreme Court Judge said in the other case the defendant lured three different girls to secluded areas in different times under the pretext of performing custom on their cult ways to fail any investigation against them by school authorities and police.
One of the three girls was suffering from stomachache and the man approached her, claiming he can find some custom leaves to relief her from pains she was experiencing.
Justice Saksak said the victims were from three different schools in Ambrym.
The court heard he told them to close their eyes before he started wrapping the leaves around their heads, bodies and finally asked them to take their clothes off.
They would reject that part but the defendant put them down forcibly and raped them.
One of the victim confessed out during a church event in their village while the other two reported the matter to the police.
Justice Saksak said that two victims were 16-years-old while the other was 17 at the time of the offending.
For sexual intercourse, the man was ordered seven years and two years and three years for the acts of indecency on the victims.
The defendant was also handed three and five years for attempted rape and the judge ordered those sentenced to be run concurrently.
This meant the total cumulative sentence for all four offences is 17 years imprisonment. In addition, this shall be made consecutive with the two years and eight months with the first case, bringing the total sentence 19 years and eight months imprisonment.
In mitigation, the man has spent six months in prison from February 24, 2018.
The man’s health was considered for suffering hearth problem and have reconciled with the victims and to the village chiefs and community by presenting two pigs and a bullock.
The court took into consideration his remorse and good cooperation with the police during their investigation.
Justice Saksak deducted three years and eight months from 19 years and eight months sentence, leaving the balance of 16 years.
He then made one third reduction on the sentence after considering his guilty plea leaving an end sentence of 10 years and eight months imprisonment to be served in prison.