Less than 24 hours after Minister of Youth and Culture Lisa Hanna called for tougher penalties for adults who sexually abuse children, the blood-curdling story has emerged of a mother who held her teenage daughter hostage, so that she could be repeatedly raped by an adult male.
Officers from the police Centre for the Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA) yesterday announced that the mother, whose name is being withheld, is facing charges for two counts of aiding and abetting rape and two counts of cruelty to a child.
The Sunday Gleaner understands that the 57-year-old man had sex with the child at least twice.
He was arrested and charged after CISOCA's investigation revealed that the mother held her 15-year-old daughter and allowed the man, who the little girl knows, to have sex with her.
Sunday Gleaner sources, close to the Kingston 11 community where the incident took place, claim that the man and the woman are involved in an intimate relationship and he has supported the family financially for some time.
cash flow to cease
According to the sources, the man indicated to the mother that the money would be cut off if the 15-year-old did not have sex with him.
This has not been confirmed by the police.
Last Friday, Hanna marked the end of Child Month with a media briefing where she lamented that too many Jamaicans see nothing wrong with girls below the age of 16 having sex.
"There is a reality of paedophilia and it is coming to the fore now," said Hanna.
Her pronouncements were similar to a report given to The Sunday Gleaner recently by a CISOCA investigator who requested that his name be withheld.
According to the investigator, the worst thing he has heard from a mother is that "little sex nah kill you", in reference to a sexually active child below the age of consent.
The investigator said that this is the justification some mothers use when confronted with evidence that they were aware of the sexual abuse of their children.
However, CISOCA has been clamping down on the practice and recently reported that in the first 11 days of February it made 34 arrests. In March, 45 persons were brought in and for April, 51.
Last month, 55 persons were arrested on charges of sexual abuse.
That list includes Jermaine Forrest, a bus driver employed to the Jamaica Urban Transit Company.
It is alleged that Forrest was driving a bus when a female student of a prominent Corporate Area high school boarded it at the Rockfort Depot.
Forrest allegedly detoured with the lone passenger and stopped the bus before holding her and sexually molesting her. He is now in custody awaiting trial.
Of the 55 persons arrested in May, two of the cases were brought against adult females who had been engaging in sexual relationships with underage boys.