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A 36-year-old labourer charged with raping an 11-year-old girl was granted $150,000 bail when he appeared before a Princes Town magistrate yesterday.

The Princes Town man appeared virtually before Senior Magistrate Indira Misir-Gosine from the Princes Town Police Station. The charges include sexual penetration and sexual grooming of the girl. The accused was the boyfriend of the girl’s mother.

The alleged incidents took place between January 1 and March 31 2019, when the man began grooming the child and eventually had sex with her. Her mother reported the matter to Princes Town police, who transferred the report to the Child Protection Unit. Investigators obtained a medical from Children’s Authority doctors, who confirmed the child was sexually active.

According to the girl’s account, on dates unknown between the period January and March 2019, her stepfather allegedly showed her pornography on his cellular phone when her mother was not at home. On the last occasion, the girl told police, the man allegedly had sexual intercourse with her. The incident was discovered by her mother, who came home to see her daughter in a compromising position. When the mother enquired further from the girl, she confided in her mother about other alleged acts.

Following an investigation, WPC Nicole St John, of the Marabella Police Station, charged the man with the offences. The investigation was headed by W/Supt Claire Guy-Alleyne with the support of acting Insp (Khan.

In granting bail yesterday, Misir-Gosine set a cash alternative of $45,000 with the condition that the accused report to the Princes Town Police Station every Saturday between 6 am and 6 pm. She also ordered him to keep 500 metres away from the child. She adjourned the matter to April 15.