Charges against Goa BJP MLA for rape of teen girl

Charges against Goa BJP MLA for rape of teen girl

St Cruz MLA Atanasio Monserrate (Babush) who was granted bail by a Goa Court in the minor rape on May 2016. (Photo: ANI)

A Goa court on Thursday framed charges against BJP MLA Atanasio Monserratte for allegedly raping a 16-year-old girl.

The police last year filed a 250-page charge sheet in North Goa district court after the investigation in the case was completed.

North Goa district and sessions court judge Sherin Paul on Thursday framed charges against Monserratte.

The trial in the case will begin on October 17.

Monserratte, 55, the MLA from Panaji constituency, has been booked under Indian Penal Code Section 376 (rape) and relevant provisions of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO).

In a statement to police in 2016, the victim, then aged 16, accused Monserratte of drugging and sexually assaulting her.

She also alleged that her mother "sold" her to Monserratte for Rs 50 lakh.

Monserratte was arrested on May 5, 2016 and is currently out on bail.

The MLA earlier denied all charges against him, saying he was innocent and the case against him was "politically motivated".