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A JUDGE sparked outrage yesterday when he allowed a vicious rapist out of jail to see the birth of his victim's child.

Arian Armstrong, 21, will be in the delivery room as the 13-year-old schoolgirl he raped gives birth by Caesarean section.

Armstrong, who was her mother's boyfriend, was released last week after a secret plea bargain involving the mother. He could have faced 15 years in jail.

At the original court case, the girl said: "I want him to stay in jail forever."

Rape crisis groups say she should be spared the appalling ordeal. The girl, from Broward County, Florida, in the US, was raped repeatedly by Armstrong last April when the mother left him to babysit her and three other kids.

The court agreed he should be barred from contacting the girl, but ruled "he can be present for the birth of his child".

Last night, a Sexual Assaults Centre spokesman said: "It is absolutely outrageous. This man rapes a 13-year-old girl and then he's allowed to attend the birth."

Judge Marc Gold had appointed a guardian ad litem for the girl - a neutral volunteer to protect her interests in court. But that person had no part in the deal.

Guardian programme chief Jeanette Wagner said: "We are devastated in terms of the lenient sentence."

Last week, Armstrong, who had been in jail since August, was sentenced to two years of community control and five years' probation.
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Author:Lines, Andy
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Apr 13, 2000
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