Six years after it began, the Preliminary Inquiry into the matter for which Muslim scholar, Neezam Ali was charged for raping nine boys is resuming at the Sparendaam Magistrates’ Court.
The matter which is before the Courts for six years now is set for continuation on February 22, 2018 before Magistrate Alex Moore.
Ali was a 33-year-old Imam when he allegedly raped nine boys, who took Quran and Arabic lessons from him, between December 2011 and January 2012.
The virtual complainants allege that Ali had penetrative anal intercourse with them while they were minors. The incident allegedly took place as the boys were attending classes at an East Coast Demerara Masjid.
The Muslim Scholar of 268 Section ‘C’ 5 South Turkeyen had previously undergone a Preliminary Inquiry before Magistrate Moore on several counts of sexual activity with a child by abusing a position of trust.
Ali was committed to stand trial in the High Court in 2013. However, last year, the matter was sent back to the Magistrates’ Court based on directive of the Director of Public Prosecutions, (DPP).
It was reported that the medical reports and birth certificates, of the nine boys involved in the case had allegedly disappeared.
In addition to remitting the matter to the Magistrate Alex Moore to re-open the paper committals, the DPP also issued a directive to the Guyana Police Force to obtain certified copies of the original documents. Kaieteur News understands that those files have since been reconstructed and currently before the Magistrate’s Court.
Ali had been committed to stand trial in the High Court by Magistrate Alex Moore in 2013.
Ali was placed on $1,300,000 bail after his appearance before the Court.
The allegations of abuse first came to light when the Child Care and Protection Agency (CPA) received an anonymous tip and officials there began an investigation that led them to the boys, who were then between the ages of four and ten. The victims are now in their teens.
Shortly after committal, his lawyer, Nigel Hughes, filed an action in the High Court to have the committal overturned. However, this was rejected by the court.
His application was made on several grounds, including that the Magistrate acted in excess of his jurisdiction when he failed to consider the expert opinion of Dr. Walter Ramsahoye, who testified that it was impossible for the accused to commit the act, since he is impotent.
This statement was the essence of Ali’s defence, one which the defence claimed was ignored by the prosecution and the Magistrate.
But Magistrate Moore in response, noted that police witness, Inspector Hatty David, testified that Dr. Ramsahoye’s opinion was formed from information provided by Ali, and was not one which came as result of doctors treating and attending to a medical condition, which the accused suffered, over a period of time.
Eventually, the then acting Chief Justice (CJ) Ian Chang ruled the court does not see it fit to quash the order of committal of the Magistrate.
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