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Irish court jails Nigerian ex-model, student for rape

Utseoritselaju Uwatse, a Nigerian former model has been jailed in Ireland for four years for raping a fellow college student.

On Monday, a Central Criminal Court jury found the 25-year-old guilty of the offence which occured on April 20, 2018.

The prosecutor had told the court that on that night, a handful of college students had went to a student village for drinks. It was there that Uwatse had met the victim, Danielle Lyons. Later on, the students all went to their hostels where the prosecutor said more partying was being hosted in various apartments.

That same night, the court heard that Uwatse directed his victim to one of the bedrooms, where she said she only remembers him taking off her shoes.

However, in the morning, she said that she knew something wasn’t right- especially when he asked her if I “was on the pill”. Lyon expressed that she found the question strange and was shocked when he had told her that they had had sex and the condom had become a problem. She explained further this was when she realised that she had not agreed to the sexual act and it made her upset.

Police was called but Uwatse did not get arrested until June of that year and when he was, he told the court that the act had been consensual. He was however charged for rape.

In her emotion laden victim statement to the court, Lyon said: “I don’t think there are any words that would convey the damage that you have done. The woman who is here today is broken down. I felt guilty for the heaviness I brought to my friends and family.”

While sentencing Uwatse on Monday, Justice Paul Burns reiterated that rape is a big crime and the one- time model who has ‘had a promising future ahead of him’ before this crime deserved a very stiff punishment.

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