Britain's worst rapist Reynhard Sinaga could die behind bars if sentence increased

16 January 2020, 15:48

Reynhard Sinaga, 36, could die behind bars if senior judges have him re-sentenced
Reynhard Sinaga, 36, could die behind bars if senior judges have him re-sentenced. Picture: Greater Manchester Police

By Megan White

Britain’s most prolific rapist could have his sentence increased by the Court of Appeal after Government lawyers moved to appeal against his 30-year jail term as too lenient.

Reynhard Sinaga, 36, could die behind bars if senior judges have him re-sentenced to a rare, whole-life term, meaning he would never be released.

The Indonesian student, was jailed for life earlier this month after drugging 48 men and filming himself sexually violating them in his Manchester city centre apartment.

But after lawyers for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) wrote to the Attorney General Geoffrey Cox on Thursday, he referred the case to the Court of Appeal to look at whether Sinaga's sentence should be increased.

The Attorney General said: "After carefully considering the details of this case, I have decided to refer the sentence to the Court of Appeal.

"Sinaga carried out an egregious number of attacks over a prolonged period of time, causing substantial pain and psychological suffering to his victims.

"It is now for the court to decide whether to increase the sentence."

The "perpetual student," who was studying for a PhD in Manchester thanks to his rich family, picked up drunk and vulnerable men by posing as a "good Samaritan" and offering help, Manchester Crown Court heard during his trial.

Passing sentence, Judge Suzanne Goddard QC said a whole-life order had never been made before in a case other than one involving murder, but despite the "vast scale" of offending making Sinaga's a borderline case, she would "shrink back" from passing a whole-life term.

However, she added: "In my judgment, you are a highly dangerous, cunning and deceitful individual who will never be safe to be released, but that is a matter for the Parole Board."

The crime scene in Reynhard Sinaga's Manchester city-centre property
The crime scene in Reynhard Sinaga's Manchester city-centre property. Picture: Greater Manchester Police

Richard Littler QC, defending Sinaga, submitted that the legal authorities did not support the passing of a whole-life sentence in the defendant's case.

He said the Court of Appeal has never imposed a whole-life order for a discretionary life sentence and, to date, whole-life terms had not been passed in non-homicide cases.

Mr Littler said: "This could be accurately described as an evil crime but in fact it cannot accurately be described as a violent crime."

Police established during their investigations that 195 different males appear to have been unconscious while Sinaga assaulted them, but 70 of them remained unidentified.

It is thought Sinaga laced his victims' drinks with a drug such as GHB, also known as liquid ecstasy.

The rapist was caught when one of the men regained consciousness and fought him off before he went to the police and, crucially, handed in Sinaga's phone.

He was found guilty of a total of 159 offences committed between January 2015 and May 2017 - 136 counts of rape, 13 counts of sexual assault, eight counts of attempted rape and two counts of assault by penetration.