Jelani Maraj was sentenced 25 years behind bars over his crime of endangering a child and sexual assault of a minor by Supreme Court Justice Robert McDonald on Monday, as confirmed by Brendan Brosh, the Nassau County District Attorney.
The sentencing was the final part of the trial that began in 2015 with the 11-year-old victim coming forward to give her testimony, Maraj was convicted two years later in 2017. Nicki Minaj, the younger sister of Miraj, who has previously shown support to her older brother was absent at the hearing.
Jelani Maraj sentenced to 25 years behind bars
The trial took place in a Long Island courtroom where he was found guilty after a month-long trial of predatory sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child. Jelani was first arrested in 2015 over these charges and placed on a $100,000 bail.
According to reports, prosecutors showed evidence that showed the extent of abuse the victim has suffered at the hands of Jelani. "We will be appealing this excessive sentence. There was clear juror misconduct amongst other issues," said Maraj's attorney David M Schwartz when asked about the conviction of his client.
At one shocking point during Maraj's trial, the victim, who shall remain unnamed, took to the stand and testified against him, saying, that he would refer to her as his "puppet" and that he repeatedly raped her during the timeframe of April to November 2015.
Details of assault are heartbreaking
The details of the assault are heartbreaking with the brave victim coming forward with damning allegations with the child accusing Maraj of assaulting her in their basement one Sunday in 2015 with her mother and Maraj's wife in the residence.
Maraj was first charged back in April 2016, where he denied assaulting his stepdaughter when she was only 11-year-old. Mr. Schwartz, Maraj's attorney claimed that the whole trial was a smokescreen screen created by the mother of the victim to extort $25 Million from Maraj.
In October 2019, a Nassau County judge denied Maraj and Schwartz's bid to have the verdict overturned. Maraj and Schwartz have planned to appeal his conviction.