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Court Report

In court news, a 46-year-old man is held on bail of $10,000 over sexual claims involving a 16-year-old girl.

Ma’alona Ioane appeared in the District Court this week and is facing six criminal charges. Two charges of each, sexual abuse, first-degree assault, third-degree, and endangering the welfare of a child.

Court filings say the sexual claims came to light when the victim was observed with significant changes in her behavior during school last year in October. School officials queried the student, and it was then revealed that she was a victim of sexual abuse.

Officials then referred the victim to Catholic Services for assistance; three days later, the Social Worker, along with the victim and her mother, lodged a criminal complaint with the Police against Ma'alona.

The victim told Police that in September last year, on her way home, the defendant called out to her and grabbed her from behind at an abandoned shack.

It’s alleged he kissed her neck. The girl went home and told her mother. The mother contacted the defendant, but he denied the sexual claims.

However, later in the day, the defendant and his wife went to the victim’s residence and apologized for what occurred.

She further told the Police that a previous incident occurred in July 2021. She was hanging out with his 12-year-old daughter at the defendant's residence, and it’s alleged Maalona touched the victim inappropriately.

The defendant denied the sexual claims against him.

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