Justice Okon Okon of Akwa Ibom State High Court, on Wednesday, sentenced one Anwana Peter Essien, a prophet to 21 years in prison for raping his 10-year-old stepdaughter
The convict, a prophet with the Restoration Bible Church, Itiam Street, Uyo, and a native of Afaha Ise in Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area of the state, is said to have committed the crime on August 9, 2019, when her mother brought her and her younger sister for holiday with their stepfather in his house at Itiam Street, Uyo.
In his evidence before the court, the 37-year-old prophet said that he was pushed into the act by demons, admitting that he forcefully removed the clothes of his stepdaughter and had unlawful carnal knowledge of her.
Delivering judgement on Wednesday, Justice Okon held that the confession was “direct, positive and unequivocal and that the randy stepfather had sexual intercourse with his stepdaughter.”
The court held that “the parameters established for the proof of rape, have all been satisfied by the evidence of the prosecution witnesses, including the victim and the medical doctor who examined her, fortified by the confessional statement voluntarily made by the accused person himself.”
According to the court, “it is most despicable and depressing, that the supposed man of God overpowered and defiled an innocent child of about ten years who is incidentally, his own stepdaughter.”
Justice Okon described the conduct as “bizarre and degrading” adding that “the defendant lacks any claim of moral rectitude having thrown overboard, the limits of his liberties by shamelessly stripping and polluting the dignity, chastity and sanctity of his stepdaughter’s body and totally disregarding her underage status.”
The court found Essien guilty as charged and accordingly convicted him.
Justice Okon said the 21 years imprisonment was with effect from when the convict was taken into custody in the Custodial Centre, Uyo.
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