Four people who raped a teenage girl at a flat in Ramsgate have been convicted following a trial.
Shershah Muslimyar, 20, formerly of Hovenden Close, Canterbury; Tamin Rahmani, 37, formerly of Northwood Road, Ramsgate; Rafiullah Hamidy, 24, formerly of High Street, Herne Bay; and Hamid Mohamadi, 18, formerly of Boughton Aluph, Ashford, attacked the 16-year-old at Rahmani’s home in Northwood Road in the early hours of Sunday 18 September 2016.
Hamidy fled to Italy following the incident but was returned to the UK in March 2017 after a European Arrest Warrant was issued.
All four denied rape but were found guilty today (May 26) following a trial at Canterbury Crown Court.
The jury heard how the victim had been out with a group of friends in Ramsgate but left them in the early hours with the intention of walking to another girl’s home in Cliftonville.
Group of men
On the way she was approached by a group of men, whom she asked for directions. Instead they led her to Rahmani’s flat, where she was raped before being escorted back out of the building.
Two members of the public returning from a night out invited the victim into their home after they found her crying in the street. The incident was reported to police shortly afterwards.
Officers from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate carried out extensive enquiries into the incident and were able to link the defendants through forensic evidence and CCTV of their movements beforehand.
Rahmani was the first to be arrested on Sunday 18 September followed by Muslimyar three days later. Mohamadi was arrested on Monday 5 December.
Hamidy could not be traced so a photograph of him was placed on the ‘Most Wanted’ page of the Kent Police website and circulated via social media.
It was later established he had fled to Taranto in the Apulia region of southern Italy, where he was detained by officers from the local police force under a European Arrest Warrant.
Hamidy was returned to the UK following an extradition hearing and taken into custody after arriving at Heathrow Airport on Tuesday 28 March.
Senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Richard Vickery said: “The victim in this case was a vulnerable teenage girl who was taken advantage of and subjected to some of the most horrendous crimes imaginable.
“It was late at night, she was lost and she asked a group of men for directions. Instead they saw an opportunity to fulfil their depraved sexual desires and betrayed the trust she placed in them in the worst possible way.
“Rape is an abhorrent crime and the victim has suffered a great deal of emotional harm from the ordeal she was forced to endure. She has displayed tremendous courage in reliving what happened to her, and I would like to personally thank her for having the strength to help bring her offenders to justice.
“They clearly pose a significant danger to women and children and are fully deserving of the lengthy prison sentences they will surely now serve.”
A date for sentencing has not yet been confirmed.
Kent and Medway Sexual Assault Referral Centre (0800 133 7432) can give you practical help and support if you’ve been a victim of sexual assault – and you don’t have to involve the police unless you want to.
Family Matters (01474 536661) provides expert care, therapy and counselling, as well as a friendly voice, for adults and children who have survived sexual abuse or rape.
East Kent Rape Line (0800 458 28 18) is a confidential telephone help and support line offering counselling and practical advice to adults and children who
have experienced rape or sexual abuse. The service forms part of Rape Crisis.
Your local GP can also provide medical assistance and support as well as signpost you to other specialist services.