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Man jailed for raping deaf girl

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A 53-YEAR-OLD Dete man accused of raping a mentally challenged, hard of hearing and hard of speech juvenile was yesterday sentenced to 12 years in prison.

NOKUTHABA DLAMINI
OWN CORRESPONDENT

Samuel Muleya of Lambo village was convicted on his own plea of guilty when he appeared before Hwange regional magistrate for the Western Division, Dambudzo Malunga.

According to the State’s outline, on May 14 at around 1pm, Muleya visited a fellow villager’s fields and found the 16-year-old girl strolling around. He asked her where her grandmother was and she used sign language to inform him that she had returned home.

The State said Muleya then asked the girl if they could have sex and she allegedly agreed.

He took her to sheaves of maize where he undressed and raped her once.

However, Muleya’s luck ran out as the girl’s uncle got to the fields and saw Muleya sexually abusing her.

The girl’s uncle confronted Muleya and asked him why he was sexually abusing his niece.

Muleya blamed evil spirits and promised to compensate the victim with a female goat for the rape not to be reported.

However, a report was made at the Dete Police Station, leading to Muleya’s arrest.

In mitigation, Muleya begged the court to hand him a lenient sentence citing his age and that he was a family man.

He also insisted that the victim had agreed to have sex with him using sign language.

However, Malunga sentenced Muleya to 15 years and suspended three years on condition of good behaviour.

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