Despite marrying rape victim, court orders man to enter defence

KOTA KINABALU, Dec 11 — The Sessions Court today ordered a restaurant manager ch arged with statutory rape to enter into his defence.

Judge Ummu Khaltom Abd Samad said the court found that the prosecution had a established a prima facie case against Riduan Masmud, 40.

The judge fixed Dec 16 and 17 for the hearing. The court had heard the testimonies of 19 witnesses from July 1 to Nov 14.  

Riduan had claimed trial to raping a schoolgirl aged slightly over 12 between 9am and 10am in a car by the roadside near the Kionsom Waterfall in Inanam on Feb 18 this year.

He faces a maximum jail term of 20 years and whipping upon conviction.

On May 20, Riduan told the court that he had married the girl.

However, on June 6, the Attorney-General’s Chambers said it would proceed with the prosecution against the restaurant manager.

The prosecution is led by Deputy Public Prosecutor Raja Zaizul Faridah Raja Zaharuddin while Riduan is not represented.

Lawyer Mary Lee is holding a watching brief for NGOs Sabah Women Action Resource Group (SAWO), Women’s Centre for Change, Penang (WCC Penang), Sisters in Islam and Mama Anne of Bukit Harapan, and Mary Florence Gomez, for the Sabah Law Association and the Voice of Children Malaysia. — Bernama

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