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Man pleads guilty to sex with 13-year-old girl he claimed to be in love with

A man who claimed to be in love with a 13-year-old girl he had sex with will have to wait to learn his fate after pleading guilty on Thursday.

Court heard the 26-year-old, while in prison and acting through the use of an interpreter, had indicated that he wished to admit to the single offence.

Gheorghita Gabriel Nastasa, of Thomas Street, Portadown was arraigned on the charge of sexual activity involving penetration of a person under 16 at Craigavon Crown Court on Thursday.

On July 2, as a person over the age of 18, Nastasa engaged in sexual touching involving penetration on a person under the age of 18.

Previously court heard that following his arrest in July, Nastasa admitted to having sexual intercourse with the youngster.

He confirmed knowing the injured party’s age but claimed that he didn’t realise it was a crime.

This arrest came about when the victim’s mother had contacted police after attending the hospital with her daughter on July 11.

It had also been previously heard that Nastasa had claimed to be in love with this child and indicated he believed they were in a genuine relationship.

Prosecution barrister stated: “Mr Nastasa has a limited understanding of English, but we spoke to him in the presence of an interpreter in prison where he gave instructions to enter a plea of guilty”.

The defendant confirmed his guilty plea in the dock on Thursday.

The prosecutor commented: “I would have encouraged the court to deal with the matter today, however, due to a clerical error beyond anyone’s control there is no interpreter.

“In the absence of this, I think it would be careless to go ahead with sentencing”.

His Honour Judge Patrick Lynch stated: “Given the nature of the charges I think that either way, I would have required a pre-sentence report”.

Nastasa was remanded in custody to appear before Craigavon Crown Court on March 29 for sentencing.

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