Stiff prison sentences have been handed down on two persons including the Elder in a church for committing serious sexual offences in the country.
36-year-old Terry Noel of Soubise in St. Andrew has been ordered to spend the next eleven (11) years of his life behind bars at the Richmond Hill Prison after being convicted of two counts of Rape.
A contractor by profession, Noel who is a former elder of the Soubise Seventh Day Adventist Church, was also sentenced last week Thursday by Madam Justice Gilford to 5 years and 9 months on two counts of rape to run consecutively.
The accused who was represented by Attorney-at-Law Niesha John appeared before Madam Justice Paula Gilford at the Number 2 High Court on The Carenage in St. George’s.
According to the Office of the DPP, the crimes were committed between January to August 2009 and August to December 2010, respectively.
THE NEW TODAY understands that the victim attended the same church as Noel and was reluctant to report the incidents because she was uncertain that anyone would believe her due to the marital status and rank in the Church of the perpetrator.
This newspaper was told that the hierarchy of the Adventist church has taken action against the victim.
According to a source the Management Board of the church met and decided to bar the woman from partaking in some of its activities.
In addition, some church members who are pro-Noel are said to be meeting the woman and uttering degrading comments and accusing her of trying to spoil the character of the convicted man.
Justice Gilford also handed down a sentence of 19 years and 9 months last week Thursday for incest on 38-year old Trevor Alston Thomas of the sister isle of Carriacou.
It is believed to be the stiffest sentence ever administered in Grenada by a sitting judge for a sexual offence of that nature.
Thomas, who retained the services of seasoned criminal attorney, Anselm Clouden to assist him, was convicted of having sexual intercourse with his daughter, who was 12 years old at the time of the incident.
THE NEW TODAY understands that the incident occurred on September 8, 2013 while the child was visiting her father at his home at Belvedere, Carriacou to collect school supplies.
The child reportedly told her mother about the incident, and she alerted the Carriacou police and Child Protection Authority.
Madam Justice Gilford also ordered Thomas to undergo psychological counseling as part of his conviction.