A sexagenarian who is serving a 30-year jail sentence for raping an eight-year-old girl has been allowed to appeal his conviction and sentence by the Court of Appeal of Guyana.
Collin Cummings, now in his 60s, was convicted of raping the child in 2018, and he must serve 25 years of his sentence before he is eligible for parole.
He was tried for the sexual offence by a mixed 12-member jury before Justice Simone Morris-Ramlall at the Sexual Offences Court in Georgetown.
During a case management conference (CMC) on Thursday, Cummings’s lawyer Tiffany Durant, and Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Dionne Mc Cammon were given strict timelines for when they must file written submissions regarding an issue that was raised by the court.
The appeal will be heard on June 14 at 09:30 hours and the court’s bench will comprise Justices of Appeal Dawn Gregory and Rishi Persaud and High Court Judge Jo Ann Barlow.
The evidence in Cumming’s case revealed that he engaged in sexual penetration with the girl on August 20, 2016, by inserting his fingers into her vagina.
Justice Morris-Ramlall, in her sentencing remarks, had upbraided Cummings for his wrongdoing, telling him that he violated the minor in the worst possible way.
She told Cummings that he stole the child’s innocence which can never be restored. “Our children must be left alone,” said the Judge as he reprimanded the convict.
According to the presiding Judge, children should be given toys to play with and not be used as sex objects to fulfill the sexual desires of depraved adults.
Despite the guilty verdict by his peers, Cummings has maintained his innocence and as such, has asked the appellate court to quash the trial court’s decision.