Protecting our children from the likes of Joshua Robinson

When it comes to pedophile Joshua Robinson, I do not for one second think that his punishment is sufficient, it will never be sufficient. It can only be a deterrent, but as retributive action – it is already too late.

A charge of rape is very… very difficult to prove. It is not the job of the defendant to prove he is innocent, it is up to the prosecutors to prove he is guilty. A trial can stretch for months and this can be very traumatising for the victim.

To prove any crime, prosecutors must prove two things:

1.) That the act did happen

2.) The state of mind/intention/guiltiness

In the case of rape, these two must be fulfilled:

1.) That the penis did enter the vagina (anything else, it is not rape and more likely sexual assault)

2.) The lack of consent

Without consent, it is not rape. If the girl is unable to consent (either because of age or mental deficiency, it is statutory rape). Rape carries with it a maximum of 20 years imprisonment, a fine and/or caning. We can see from the punishment that the state considers this a vile offence, deserving of very harsh punishments.

Joshua was asked to plead guilty to the illegal act of sex with a minor. The girl is above the age of 14 but under the age of 16. She may consent, but the State does not allow her to have sexual relations. Since there is consent, it does not fulfil the elements required of rape.

The prosecutors had asked for him to plead guilty and take four to five years of imprisonment. If he had claimed trial, it would mean that the victims and their families would have to bear the trauma of having to testify and be cross-examined in a trial – perhaps for months. 

The prosecutors have a tricky decision – to get Joshua to plead guilty quickly…or tell him to accept a full sentence and risk him claiming trial and in so-doing subjecting the victims to great stress. Not only will they have to undergo cross-examining, the media (and especially the alternative media) would be poking their noses into their private lives. They won’t be able to bury this quickly and move on.

A man as evil as him may just claim trial just for the vengeance. It could result in a Pyrrhic victory for the prosecutors; they win…but at high cost.

Here is a list of how Joshua’s offences were compounded:

About the author

Tay Leong Tan

Tay Leong Tan is a collective of 3 writers. Tay, Leong and Tan. (Who were you expecting?!) We are enthusiastic about labour issues, economics and current affairs in particular.

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