Men freed of rape charges after complainants refuse to testify, cannot be located

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

A High Court Judge has ordered the discharge of two men accused of rape after the virtual complainants (VCs) in their respective cases refused to testify and could not be located.

Kevin Frank and Stephon Gordon had been indicted for the offences of rape and rape of a child under the age of 16, respectively. Gordon had been accused of raping an 11-year-old girl on December 29, 2020, at a location in Georgetown.

Frank had been accused of raping a woman, 38.

When the men’s cases were called before Demerara High Court Judge Priya Sewnarine-Beharry, the VC in Gordon’s case refused to testify while the VC in Frank’s matter could not be located.

With the prosecutors unable to locate the witness for close to three weeks, they discontinued their case against Frank. In light of the circumstances, the presiding Judge ordered the juries in both matters to return formal not-guilty verdicts in favour of the accused persons.

They were therefore discharged.

In Gordon’s matter, the State contended that on the day in question, the child’s mother sent her to a nearby shop to purchase an item but she never returned home until the next day.

As a result, her mother went in search of her and notified family members that she was missing.

On December 30, 2020, the child returned home and when questioned by her mother as to her whereabouts, she informed her that she spent the night at Gordon’s home and he raped her.

A report was immediately made to the Police and based on investigations; the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) recommended that Gordon be charged with child rape.

Meanwhile, the VC in Frank’s case alleged that he came to her home one night, pushed open the door, and entered her dwelling.

While they were in the bedroom, she alleged that the man raped her.

When Frank allowed her to leave the bedroom, the woman raised an alarm and the Police were called in. Both Frank and Gordon were represented by Attorney-at-Law Teriq Mohammed.

The prosecutors were Attorneys-at-Law Simran Gajraj, Latifah Elliot, and Rbina Christmas.Gordon was out on $200,000 bail pending his trial while Frank had been on remand.