Convicted confidence trickster Troy Webster was yesterday sentenced to 30 years behind bars for raping a woman who had met with him to finalize arrangements for a sales-rep job he had deceitfully promised her.
Before handing down the sentence, Justice Jo-Ann Barlow told the 38-year-old father of two that the court needed to send a strong message to potential offenders that such actions would not be condoned.
Referencing evidence presented during the trial, the judge noted that it was not the first time that Webster had used “bold and daring tactics to do what you wanted to do.”
Justice Barlow said the convict used one trick after another to lure the young woman, and after gaining her trust, preyed on her.
Alluding to evidence led by the state that Webster would habitually defraud women of money under various false pretences, the judge told him that in this case he went even further by committing rape.
To this end, she told the convict that society needed to be protected from such cons.
Though no victim impact statement was presented to the court, Justice Barlow recalled from the complainant’s testimony the hurt she said she still feels from the assault which can never be undone.
In his impassioned address to the court, however, Webster began by declaring that while he has to accept the jury’s decision, it caught him by “surprise,” “but the jury and the prosecution have their jobs to do,” he added.
Webster’s contention is that he did have sex with the then 25-year-old woman, but remains resolute that it was consensual.
He then sought to offer an apology for any pain or embarrassment which he said he may have caused the woman, but made it clear that his apology was not directed to the rape as he reemphasized, “we did have sex, but she consented.”
In a plea for the judge to be merciful in handing down sentence, Webster said that there was nothing more that he could do, and that “God will do the remainder.”
In passing sentence, Justice Barlow told the convict that there seemed to have been something in him which pushes him to commit trickery.
To this end, she told him to use his time behind bars wisely to reflect on what he has done and resolve to change his actions, so that upon his release he can make meaningful contributions to society.
The judge expressed hope that the convict would never again find himself before the courts and that he will desist from using the cunning means which he used to defraud and defile persons.
To this end, the court noted that Webster had told his attorney that he had been on remand for the rape charge for the past year and half.
The prosecution, however, subsequently produced records substantiating that this was not the case.
Prosecutor Tiffini Lyken said the reason Webster was behind bars had been because of the almost 10-year sentence he is currently serving, having been found guilty at the Magistrates Court on a barrage of fraud charges.
Justice Barlow ordered that the 30-year sentence she imposed commence after Webster would have completed serving time for the fraud charges.
The charge against him stated that on November 21, 2015 he sexually penetrated the woman without her consent.
A 12-member mixed jury returned its 11-1 verdict after about three hours of deliberations, finding Webster guilty as charged.
Webster was represented by defence attorney Clyde Forde.
The state’s case meanwhile, was led by Lyken in association with Prosecutors Abigail Gibbs and Seeta Bishundial.
The trial proceedings were held in-camera at the Sexual Offences Court of the High Court in Georgetown.