Accused rapist charged as parents agree to testify

By Benjamin Flowers
Staff Reporter

The Ministry of Human Development explained this week that the parents of a 13-year-old girl rape victim from Santa Familia Village have decided to press charges against their nephew and son who allegedly committed the act.
Chief Executive Officer in the ministry, Judith Alpuche, explained on Tuesday, that the parents, who were hesitant to file charges when the incident was first reported last week, have officially asked the San Ignacio police to make the charges.

Alpuche added that the ministry will continue to play an active role in the matter.
“The ministry will continue to supervise the parents in supporting the child”, Alpuche said.

Officer Commanding the San Ignacio police formation, Superintendent Andrew Ramirez, said that both men, 21 and 26 years old,, have been remanded to the Belize Central Prison on charges of rape, and abetment to rape.
They are scheduled to go to court on November 25.

The evidence against the two men show that around midnight on September 4, the victim’s brother woke her up and took her to her cousin’s room where the victim says he had sex with her against her will, and he tried to do the same thing the night after that.
A medical examiner’s report confirms that the child had indeed been sexually assaulted.

Minister of Human Development, Anthony Martinez, addressing the media last week, said that it was his ministry’s responsibility to act on behalf of the child; to bring charges against the accused if the parents refused to do so.
Martinez maintained that the approach was two-pronged; with the police addressing the criminal aspect and the ministry looking after the welfare of the child.
He added that he thought it likely that the parents could be criminally charged if the continued to refuse the report the crime.

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