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Magistrate sent to court for rape

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Police in Gbarnga, Bong County have charged and sent to court the Assigned Magistrate at the Bong Mines Magisterial Court for allegedly raping a 13 – year – old girl in the area.

Richard K. Flomo, Jr., aged 54, is currently being transferred to the Gbarnga Central Prison pending court trial. Magistrate Richard Flomo is the son of former Bong County Senator Cllr. Richard Flomo, Sr.

The Bong County Detachment of the Liberia National Police (LNP) started investigating the matter in February this year following a tip – off from relatives of the survivor.

The 13 – year – old rape survivor, told a team of LNP fact-finding officers that while returning from escorting her older sister at a nearby area in the region in February, she met defendant Richard Flomo along the road and he allegedly proposed to her for the first time.

According to police, the victim explained that she refused the accused’s proposal.The survivor said since then, defendant Richard has allegedly been tempering with her, threatening to kill her if she told anyone the situation.

In conversation with judicial reporters Tuesday following the defendant’s transfer to court, police investigator Solomon Dennis, Sr., recounted that the teen-ager had told police that she went to the defendant’s house with a friend ( name withheld) and got attacked there by the accused.

The survivor, according to police narrated that while sitting on the porch of the defendant’s house and witnessing movies on his DVD player, the accused allegedly called her in his room and forcibly took off her clothes, tied her mouth with a piece of cloth and sexually offended her.

Further, Solomon quoted the survivor as saying that Magistrate Richard K. Flomo, Jr., in a move to encourage the teen-ager, had earlier offered $6,000 Liberian Dollars to the survivor as school fees before inviting her to his house and allegedly penetrated her forcefully.

Meanwhile, defendant Richard K. Flomo, Jr., declined to make any statement in relation to the allegation levied against him by the rape survivor but promised to speak on the matter upon his appearance in court.

In accordance with Section 14. 70 (a) of the Revised Penal Code of Liberia, coupled with the minor’s statement and the medical report, the Women and Children Protection Section of the LNP on 12 April charged Magistrate Flomo and forwarded him to court for trial.

Our Bong County correspondent who followed the defendant to court says the court has not scheduled a date for the first hearing.

However, our correspondent says there is a likelihood that the hearing might start anytime this week. Several citizens of the county have expressed disappointment in Magistrate Flomo, calling for justice in the matter.

By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong County–Edited by Winston W. Parley

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