Soldier who kissed young girl in bed ‘thought she was his wife’

Nakanacagi is based at Glencorse Barracks.
Nakanacagi is based at Glencorse Barracks.

AN ARMY corporal has told a court how he kissed and touched a schoolgirl after he mistook her for his wife.

Sosiveta Nakanacagi said he had been asleep on his bed following a drinking session when the 12-year-old girl climbed on top of him and started kissing him.

Nakanacagi kissed the girl back and touched her as the pair lay on his bed.

But the corporal, who has completed four tours of Afghanistan with the 2 Scots Regiment, said he immediately pushed the girl off him when he opened his eyes and saw the person on top of him was not his wife.

Nakanacagi, who is based at Glencorse Barracks, then told a jury at Edinburgh Sheriff Court that he failed to tell his wife what had happened with the youngster because he was “confused” about the whole incident.

The Army corporal is standing trial accused of sexually assaulting the girl at an address in a town in Midlothian between March 2013 and March 2015.

The court heard evidence from the girl’s mother who said she had confronted the soldier on several occasions after her daughter told her she had been molested by the drunk corporal.

The mother said she “noticed a change” in her daughter following the incident but that the pair found it difficult to talk about what had taken place in the bedroom.

The woman added the girl had been sent to a boarding school in Perthshire after she had admitted Nakanacagi had abused her.

The court was told yesterday the girl had opened up to a teacher at her new school and police and social services were called in to investigate.

Nakanacagi, a Fijian national, told the jury he had gone to the girl’s home following a heavy drinking session at his barracks.

The 39-year-old corporal said: “I took my boots off and went upstairs to the bedroom.

“I went straight to bed and fell asleep.

“The next thing I was aware of was someone laying on top of me. She kissed me and I kissed her back.

“I (then) touched her bottom.

“I thought it was my wife because of the way she lay on top of me.

“My wife sometimes does that.

“It ended when I opened my eyes and I recognised the girl and I pushed her to one side - I pushed her off [me].

But prosecutor Kim Schofield challenged the soldier’s story by stating: “You knew it was the girl when you put you hands in her pants.”

Nakanacagi replied: “No.”

“Did the 12-year-old girl feel the same as your wife?”, Miss Schofield asked.

Nakanacagi again replied: “No.”

The fiscal depute added: “You didn’t make a mistake, did you? You knew it was her and you sexually assaulted her?”

Again the soldier replied: “No.”

Nakanacagi continues to deny sexually assaulting the girl by placing his hands inside her clothing and touching her on the buttocks on an occasion between March 17, 2013 and March 16, 2015 at an address in Midlothian.

The trial in front of Sheriff Michael O’Grady QC continues.

newsen@ediburghnews.com