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escalating violence in our community
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Sexual connection (x15) with a fourteen year old Nelson girl in September 2007
Sentenced to 2 years 3 months in November 2008
From the Nelson Mail 29th November 2008
A 41-year-old Rotorua man who plied a 14-year-old Nelson girl with alcohol and cannabis at Tahunanui Beach before having sex with her in his hotel room has been sentenced to two years and three months' imprisonment.
Victor Henare Ahipene, 41, was sentenced in the Nelson District Court on Thursday having previously pleaded guilty to five counts of sexual connection with a person under 16 and one charge of supplying cannabis to a person under 18. All the offences took place in September last year. Ahipene was also ordered to pay his victim $5000 reparation, which his lawyer said he would be able to pay from an ACC payout he was expecting as a victim of sexual abuse himself years earlier.
Judge Tony Zohrab said Ahipene had been living in a Nelson hotel while working as a scaffolding contractor. His 14-year-old victim received a text message from Ahipene on her cellphone but did not know who it was from. She replied, and the pair had a conversation by text message, in which Ahipene said he was 21 and the girl said she was 15. Judge Zohrab said the pair arranged to meet and at 11pm, Ahipene drove to the girl's street and parked a short distance from her house. She climbed out of her bedroom window and they went to Tahunanui Beach.
Judge Zohrab said they smoked a cannabis cigarette and Ahipene gave the girl a bottle of wine, which she drank most of by herself. They engaged in some sexual activity before going back to Ahipene's hotel room. The girl was intoxicated and vomited twice before having another drink and blacking out. Judge Zohrab said that when the girl woke up, Ahipene was having sex with her.
He then drove her home and left her on the street before speeding off. Ahipene's actions had been pre-meditated, and he had misled the girl and plied her with alcohol and cannabis before using her for his own sexual gratification, Judge Zohrab said.
He said Ahipene had been a victim of sexual abuse himself and was well aware that he had sentenced the girl to a lifetime of sorrow. Crown prosecutor Hugh Boyd-Wilson said there were no mitigating factors in Ahipene's offending, but acknowledged he had pleaded guilty. Defence lawyer Tony Bamford said Ahipene was expecting a lump sum payout from ACC for the abuse he had suffered when he was younger. He said that Ahipene would redirect $5000 of that money to his victim in reparation.
He said Ahipene took responsibility for what he had done, accepted that it would continue to have a substantial impact on his victim, and wanted to express his remorse.