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Child sex assault trial begins

Child sex assault trial begins

Tuesday 01 July 2014

Child sex assault trial begins


A married man accused of indecently assaulting an 11-year-old girl appeared before the Royal Court yesterday.

Houcine Bouazdia (35), who faces trial by jury, is charged with indecently assaulting the girl at premises in St Helier on the afternoon of Thursday 16th January 2014, shortly after she had finished school.

Crown Advocate Conrad Yates told the court that the alleged assault represented “an escalation of inappropriate behaviour” between the young girl and the defendant and “it made her decide she couldn’t stay silent any longer”.

Following the assault, the victim ran home in tears and reported the incident to her father.

Later the same day, they attended the police station to make a formal complaint and the girl was interviewed by police officers in the presence of a social worker. Advocate Yates explained that it was during this interview that the victim disclosed that Bouazdia had kissed her on the lips on several occasions in the preceding months, offences which make up the second charge of indecent assault that the defendant is facing.

“There was one time when he went further, when he tried to put his tongue inside her mouth,” said Advocate Yates. “She held her teeth tightly shut to prevent him from doing so,” he added.

Yesterday, the court heard extracts of a mobile phone recording taken when members of the victim’s family confronted Bouazdia, who denies the charges. They also viewed edited footage of the recorded police interview held with the young girl on 16th January, and of subsequent interviews with her, but although she will be cross-examined as part of the trial, she will not be required to appear in court and is due to give her evidence by way of a video link.

The trial is expected to last four days.

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