Bandar Seri Begawan - A 32-year-old Malaysian man was sentenced by the High Court yesterday to imprisonment for eight years, with nine strokes of the cane, after pleading guilty to a charge of statutory rape against a 12-year-old girl.
Mohammad Nizam bin Mohammad Sahari befriended the victim through Facebook in November 2011 and finally met up at a toilet behind the victim's uncle's house on November 24, 2011 in Kuala Belait, the court was told.
After chatting for a few moments, the victim's mother caught them and scared the defendant away, causing him to flee the scene. The victim was scolded by her mother. The victim then left the house to borrow someone's mobile phone and called the defendant up.
They met up again and the defendant brought the victim back to his house and they both agreed to have sex there. The victim's mother had reported her daughter missing to Seria Police Station by that time.
The following day the victim called up her mother and told that she had followed the defendant.
The victim was sent back home by the defendant the same night.
The following day, the victim confessed to her mother what had happened between them.
Doctors conducted tests on the victim and confirmed that the victim had sex.
Justice Dato Paduka Hj Hairol Arni Hj Abd Majid took into consideration that the defendant was a first offender and pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.
However, "the defendant is a sexual predator preying on young victims by befriending them through Facebook and (had) taken advantage of the vulnerability of these extremely young victims," the justice said.
Recently in September, the defendant was sentenced to jail for three years and three months, with five strokes of the cane, by the Magistrate's Court after pleading guilty to two counts of unlawful carnal knowledge of a 14 year-old girl and a charge of illegal entry into the country
Yesterday Justice Dato Paduka Hj Hairol Arni ordered for the sentence of eight years' jail to run after the expiry of the earlier sentence of three years' jail.
The caning would stand at 14 strokes.
DPP Pg Hjh Hana Pg Hj Mohammad prosecuted the case.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin