Accused to provide statement


A SENIOR magistrate has asked a man charged with two counts of the rape and murder of two girls to submit his section 96 statement to exercise his democratic rights before the court makes its ruling on the sufficiency of evidence.
Lae Committal Court Magistrate Pious Tapil told Sarox Martin, 19, from Brumkuat in Finschhafen, Morobe, that the charges against him were serious and he had to submit his statement today.
Tapil asked the police prosecution to check with the arresting officer and Martin’s parents to confirm his age, whether it was 23 as stated by police reports, or 19 as indicated in court by the accused.
Police alleged that on Dec 26, 2019, Martin raped and killed a 12-year-old girl who was following her mother to the garden.
The victim’s body was found four days later.
On Jan 10, 2020, Martin is alleged to have raped and killed a second victim, a 14-year-old girl. The victim had been on her way to look for her parents when she met her fate.
The victim’s father identified Martin who had fled the scene.
The villagers caught Martin and handed him to police.