Appeals court confirms jail sentence for woman who raped her nine-year-old grandson

The Court of Criminal Appeal confirmed a seven-year prison sentence given to the grandmother in 2009

A woman's seven-year prison sentence, for raping her nine-year-old grandson, has been confirmed on appeal (Stock photo)
A woman's seven-year prison sentence, for raping her nine-year-old grandson, has been confirmed on appeal (Stock photo)

The Court of Criminal Appeal has confirmed a seven-year prison sentence handed to a grandmother who sexually abused her nine-year old grandson in 2009, who was also being sexually abused by his uncle at the same time.

The woman had been jailed in 2017 after a court of magistrates found her guilty of defiling the minor and participating in sexual acts with him.

The grandmother had filed an appeal, insisting that she was innocent and that the child’s father had forced him to lie about her as revenge for not letting her daughter marry him.

The father, a Libyan national, had been absent from his son’s life for many years, and the child had been brought up by his maternal grandparents. When the father returned to Malta, he asked to be recognized as the natural father of the boy.

The abuse came to light after the boy tried to kiss and touch his father’s partner intimately. Asked by his father why he was acting that way, the boy explained what his uncle and later his grandmother had done to him.

The Court heard how the boy’s uncle had showed him pornographic films and had raped him. The boy had later tried to mimic these actions with his grandmother. The boy had said that his grandmother had initially pushed him away and admonished him, but when he had later tried again she did not stop him.

The boy added that the episodes with the grandmother occurred various times, sometime in the shower and in the bedroom, while there were occasions when the grandmother started the sexual acts.

The Court also heard that the boy could not control his sexual urges, and was needed medication in order to sleep. The situation had deteriorated to the point where the father felt that he could no longer take care of him.

Presiding Judge, Madame Justice Consuelo Scerri Herrera, noted that the boy’s uncle had admitted to the abuse in separate proceedings and that the child had told the court that sex with his grandmother was not painful, unlike that with his uncle. This, said the court, confirmed the defilement.

Finding no reason to reduce the punishment meted out by the first court, the judge confirmed the seven-year sentence against the woman and recommended that she be held in the forensic section of Mount Carmel hospital. It also issued a three-year protection order in favour of the boy.

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