Matthew Uyangha has been sentenced to 25 years in Prison by a High Court, sitting in Calabar, Cross River state for kidnapping and repeatedly raping a 13-year-old orphan (name withheld).
The prosecuting counsel had earlier told the court that the convict first drugged the orphan, then kidnapped her from Akpabuyo Local Government Area and relocated her to Esuk Utan in Calabar Municipality, both in the state.
The counsel further said the convict repeatedly raped his victim for the two months she was in his captivity before she was rescued by men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), who also arrested him.
Justice Blessing Egwu while delivering judgement on Thursday held that the evidence against Mr Uyangha was overwhelming and that the court finds him guilty of the two-count charge bordering on abduction and rape.
Justice Egwu said the prosecuting team has proven their case beyond reasonable doubt and sentenced the convict to 25 years in prison.
James Ibor, principal counsel of Basic Rights Counsel Initiative (BRCI), while reacting to the judgement commended the state and judiciary for their determination to keep children safe.
“The judgment showed that there is no place for rapists in Cross River as the judgment is a strong statement that the state is willing to uphold the true spirit of the Child Rights Law, among others.”
He also commended the Ministry of Justice, the International Federation of Women International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), and the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) for their roles in ensuring the teenage victim gets justice.