Shartiel Nibigira Biography Shartiel Nibigira Wiki
- Queensland church leader lost his appeal against his 11-year prison sentence for rape
- Shartiel Nibigira was convicted of assaulting a young woman in the choir in 2011 and 2012
- Nibigira raped the 9-11 year old girl in a bathroom and in the car
- Her lawyers argued that the girl’s testimony should have raised reasonable doubts.
- But the court rejected Nibigira’s arguments that the victims’ evidence was contradictory.
A former Queensland Evangelical Church leader who raped and assaulted choir girls lost an appeal against him.
Shartiel Nibigira was sentenced to 11 years in prison after being found guilty of 21 counts.
The father of eight committed the crimes in a home during choir rehearsal or while the girls were being transported to rehearsals or church events, the Brisbane District Court ruled in 2019.
A jury found Nibigira guilty of raping and indecently assaulting a girl at least eight times in 2011 and 2012, when she was between the ages of nine and eleven.
Shartiel Nibigira Queensland church leader who raped choir girls loses appeal https://t.co/SnO5iVbTul
— Distinct Today (@DistinctToday) June 8, 2021
Her testimony about the break-in and the vehicle in which the crime took place should have raised reasonable doubts among the jury about her testimony, the Queensland Court of Appeals said.
But Crown Attorney David Nardone said the young woman gave succinct details of what happened when she spoke “very naively or innocently” of the events.
“The level of clarity and precision with which she gave her testimony about her would outweigh any confusion about where the crime took place,” she said.
Mr. Nardone told the court that the girl’s testimony was confirmed to some extent by her parents, as the pain she suffered from the crime affected her ability to walk properly.
Nibigira also raped a second girl in a bathroom during choir rehearsal and indecently assaulted her at another time.
About a week after the rape, he gave the girl $ 20 to buy her silence.
Nibigira argued in the appeal court that two audio recordings of conversations between him and other people should have been taken into account during the trial.
However, the court ruled that Nibigira’s legal department was aware of the tapes, but decided not to use them.
“There can be no mistrial due to a conscious and deliberate decision not to use the recordings as evidence,” the court concluded.
He also dismissed Nibigira’s arguments that the evidence of his victims was inconsistent and determined that his evidence of the crime was rather “clear and concise”.
“His account of this pain and the consequent hardships he later experienced was supported by evidence.”
Nibigira lived in poverty before leaving Burundi in 1997 to take refuge in Tanzania.
His parents and siblings died trying to escape.
Nibigira lived in a refugee camp for 10 years before arriving in Australia in 2007.