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25-year-old chef freed of rape charges

Kofi Benjamin, a 25-year-old chef has been freed of rape charges.

Mr. Benjamin, at the age of 23, was accused of raping his 17-year-old coworker on Christmas Eve in 2020. The girl was celebrating her 17th birthday at a Villa and decided to stay overnight after partying throughout the night. Mr. Benjamin, who was the assistant chef, agreed to have the teenager stay at his staff quarter – a one room facility with two beds.

According to Wendel Robinson, Mr. Benjamin’s attorney, they had both been interacting during the night, sharing photos and speaking. He said sometime during the night, the two reportedly became intimate and began having sex. After a while, his client claimed that the young lady got off the bed and locked herself inside the bathroom.

The next day, the head chef was called in and the girl was taken to be examined which is when she claimed to have been raped. However, Mr. Benjamin insisted that the sex was consensual.

After four hours of deliberation on Thursday, a mixed jury of five males and four females returned a majority “not guilty” plea. “The jury retired close to 12pm and minutes to 4pm jury could not agree unanimously but by majority of 7:2 he was found not guilty,” Mr. Benjamin’s attorney told IPB.

Mr. Robinson, along with Merisse McDougal represented Mr. Benjamin, while Shannon Gittens, the acting Director of Public Prosecutions, represented the crown on behalf of the complainant. High court judge Justice Annmarie Smith presided over the matter.

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