Mother convicted of infanticide gets non-custodial sentence
March 22, 2019 12:50 pm
Tavenisa Raceva coming out of the High Court
A mother who killed her newborn has been handed a non-custodial sentence today by the Suva High court.
The 40-year old killed her newborn to save the child from growing up in a poverty-stricken family.
Tavenisa Raceva was initially charged with murder, however, she was found guilty of the lesser charge of infanticide yesterday by the high court.
Judge Justice Salesi Temo overturned the opinion of the three assessors who had earlier found Raceva guilty of one count of murder.
Justice Temo said that while Raceva willfully suffocated her infant child, her balance of mind was disturbed.
The court heard that Raceva has six- children.
Her eldest child got married while two others were living with relatives.
Raceva was supporting her three young children and 82-year-old mother.
She did not have any support from her family and earned $100 per week while working as a house girl.
The court heard that her children were fathered by four different males but none were supporting her.
She lived in extreme poverty which led her to commit the crime of infanticide.
Justice Temo has ordered her to undergo a two year probation period and to go through counselling.