Niubasaga was sentenced to seven years in jail for sexual assault and rape. Georgia Hinton was forced to relive the trauma in court multiple times.
Trigger warning: Sexual Assault, Rape
A 26-year-old woman from Livingston, Scotland was raped by a soldier at her home after he followed her from a barbecue. Georgia Hinton is waiving her anonymity to raise awareness of how allegations of sexual abuse are dealt with by the army. Serupepeli Niubasaga, 41, followed her home and raped the young mother while her three-year-old daughter slept upstairs. Niubasaga attempted to gaslight Hinton by telling the jury she had raped him when he turned up in her bedroom. "Niubasaga lied through his teeth, telling the jury that I raped him. But thankfully, I was believed in the end. Sadly, not many women have got justice like me though," said Hinton. He had told Hinton that her dress was an invitation to sex. He had also gone to Hinton's daughter's room, causing fear for her daughter's life. Niubasaga was jailed for seven years for sexual assault and rape. "When I took my little girl to the barbecue that day, I had no idea what horrors lay ahead. I'm just glad I got my justice and he's behind bars," said Hinton, reported The Daily Mail. She was gaslit and shamed for being a bad mother.
She had met Niubasaga during a neighbor's gathering in May 2018 and knew from the first instant that he was a creep. She noticed him leering at her the whole time during the gathering, before eventually following her home. He stalked her throughout the night and followed her home without her noticing. After Georgia Hinton put her daughter to sleep in her room, she was shocked to see Niubasaga standing in her room. He quietly walked over to her daughter's room and tried to put her to sleep. Georgia Hinton walked downstairs in the hope Niubasaga would leave his daughter's room and follow her down. He followed her downstairs and told the 26-year-old that her dress was an invitation for sex for men. She told her that her dress would attract the 'the wrong attention' in his home country.
Georgia, a pharmacy assistant, was invited into the circle of army wives after she married her now ex-wife, a Postal and Courier Operator in the army. The couple had moved to the Duke of Gloucester barracks in South Cerney, Gloucestershire with Hinton's then three-year-old daughter from a previous relationship. "I soon met all of the army wives and settled in", said Hinton. "My daughter joined the nursery there and she made plenty of friends too. But as time went on, I began feeling quite isolated from the world."
Her marriage broke down after Hinton's ex-wife was assigned new quarters, which meant she moved out of the barracks. She was invited to the barbecue after she dropped off her daughter at a neighbor's house for a play date. Niubasaga was also at the party and she knew within minutes there was something creepy about him. "I recognized him. He was a friend of an acquaintance and I'd seen him at the nursery and supermarket before, but we'd never spoken. Suddenly, he began to gawk at me, I immediately felt on edge. Then, he came over and introduced himself. But as we were chatting, he stared at my body. I realized he was a creep."
Hinton tried to excuse herself by telling Niubasaga she needed to top up her drink, but he blocked her way. "He kept saying, "Where are you going?" and "Stay longer".
'I sternly told him "No" before joining my friends." Hinton was aware of the soldier creepily staring at her all night. She finally decided to call it a night after her daughter fell asleep. "I said goodnight to everyone and carried her home. I walked upstairs and tucked her into bed," said Hinton.
"Suddenly, I heard a creak behind me. I turned around and saw Niubasaga stood in the middle of the bedroom. My heart stopped. I realized he must've followed us home." Niubasaga ignored Hinton and walked to her daughter's bed and kneeled down beside it, "He whispered, 'Go to sleep' and 'Be a good girl for your mummy,'" said Hinton. That's when she walked downstairs to draw him away from her daughter. "I calmly walked downstairs, hoping he'd follow me."
Niubasaga followed her downstairs and said: "You need to listen to me, the way you dress in my country would attract the wrong attention. Then suddenly, he started fondling my breasts. He continued saying, "Men will take the way you look as an invitation.'" She wanted to scream for help but was scared he would hurt her daughter and cried softly as he raped her. He left without saying a word. "I collapsed into a heap on the floor. Eventually, I managed to ring a friend for help, I was hysterical." It took almost three hours for the police and army welfare to arrive with Niubasaga being arrested the following day.
The very next week, Hinton and her daughter moved 200 miles away to live with her family in Lowestoft, Suffolk. She was shocked by the Army's response to the rape. "Army welfare kept saying how Niubasaga was innocent until proven guilty", said Hinton, "I was horrified that they were defending him. After that, I suffered horrible flashbacks." The court proceeding was an ordeal for her with the first trial resulting in a hung jury. It was in July 2020, that Niubusaga was finally found guilty of one count of sexual assault and one count of rape against Hinton at Bristol Crown Court. He was sentenced to seven years in jail. "I went through hell during the two trials. The defense ridiculed me as a mother for not taking my daughter away." Hinton feels the authorities aren't doing enough to help sexual assault victims in the army and she's hoping her case will enable more women to get justice.
If you are being subjected to sexual assault, or know of anyone who is, please call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4673)