May 26, 2015

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Winnipeg man found guilty of sex assault on teen

A former gang member with a criminal record is going back to prison after a jury found him guilty of a brutal rape of a 17-year-old girl in September 2011.

Richard Rondeau, 28, displayed no emotion when the verdict was read out by the jury foreman late Wednesday afternoon --  guilty of all five charges: sexual assault, forcible confinement, choking, uttering threats and assault.

Rondeau’s sentencing will take place later this year, after a pre-sentence report is prepared for the court.

The jury spent only one afternoon weighing the evidence, following six days of testimony.

Rondeau had admitted he had sex with the young girl but his defence rested on his claim that it was consensual.

Rondeau claimed the girl made up the story about the attack because she was fearful of reprisal from her boyfriend — a friend of Rondeau’s described as a violent member of the Native Syndicate gang who is behind bars — when he found out she had been unfaithful.

Crown prosecutor Daniel Chaput said the defence claim made no sense, explaining that if the girl had wanted to keep an affair quiet all she had to do was to remain silent.

Chaput reminded the jury that Rondeau had repeatedly lied to police when he was being questioned following his arrest, first denying he had any sex with the girl, before coming up with the story he presented to the jury.

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