MAKO - Australian News - Muhammed Kerbatieh

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Multiple Rapist Jailed For 22yrs

A Melbourne man who blamed the designer drug ice for sexual attacks on three teenage girls was today jailed for 22 years and nine months.
Muhammed Kerbatieh, 33, of Coburg, had denied the allegations but a County Court jury found him guilty of raping two 15-year-olds and attempting to rape a 16-year-old during a 17-day spree starting in September 2001.
Today, Judge Jim Duggan jailed him for a minimum term of 18 years, describing the attacks as "an outburst of predatory sexual violence at an outrageous level".
"You still maintain your innocence but the reality is that the case against you was quite overwhelming," Judge Duggan said.
"The fact is you exploited their youth and vulnerability and employed your superior physical strength to commit these quite outrageous crimes," he said.
The court was told that Kerbatieh lured the impressionable young girls into isolated places where he could attack them.
He told his first victim, a 15-year-old he met in Sydney Road, Brunswick, that he was a drug dealer, before taking her to a Coburg park and raping her.
"You told her you were her worst nightmare. You told her to do what you wanted otherwise you would kill her," Judge Duggan said.
Three days later Kerbatieh raped another 15-year-old whom he persuaded to come to his mother's home, where he was living, after they met at a pool hall.
He accused her of stealing $20,000 from him before handcuffing her, tying her feet and raping her.
His third victim was walking to school along Sydney Road when Kerbatieh conned, then forced her into his house, before she managed to flee.
During the trial in March, Kerbatieh sacked his lawyer, conducting his own defence and cross-examining his victims.
The jury found him guilty on 15 charges, including rape, assault with intent to rape, committing an indecent act with a child and false imprisonment.
During the plea for mitigation the court was told Kerbatieh had began using "crystal meth", or ice, after he had served a prison term for shaking his baby daughter, giving her brain damage.
Judge Duggan said a psychologist's report found Kerbatieh's heavy chronic use of "crystal meth" had disposed him toward aggression and violence.
"The violent rape of a young girl taken from the streets is rightly regarded as a most serious offence," the judge said.
"For this you have no-one to blame but yourself."

Herald and Weekly Times (20-6-2003)

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