The joys of multiculturalism are coming to a courtroom near you. In the increasingly ludicrous legal system we have today, it appears that the court of appeal in Victoria believes that those who come from a culture in which a woman has no real rights unless she is covered from head to toe, must have that taken into account in sentencing decisions.
An Afghan serial rapist has won the right to appeal a fourteen year sentence for raping two women, days apart because the judge failed to take ‘cultural differences’ into account:
AN Afghan refugee who argued cultural differences led him to rape a drunken girl has won a bid to appeal against a 14-year jail term. Esmatullah Sharifi, 31, was given a total 11-year non-parole term for two rapes committed within days of each other in December 2008.
He pleaded guilty at separate hearings to raping a teen on December 19 and a woman, 25, on Christmas Eve. He's been granted leave to appeal against the sentence for raping the teen. A date is yet to be set.
Granting leave to appeal, Court of Appeal Justice Robert Redlich said: "The sentencing judge rejected any suggestion (Sharifi) didn't have a clear concept of consent in sexual relations. His Honour concluded that the protection of the community was the principal purpose for which the sentence was imposed.” …
… But in his sentencing remarks, Judge Mark Dean said Sharifi had gone hunting for vulnerable, drunken women to rape. His flight from the Taliban was no excuse for extreme violence.
"The offence committed by you was an extremely serious act of violence, and in my opinion you well knew the victim was not consenting," he said. "You have no remorse or insight into your offending."
Sharifi found the teen near to a Frankston nightclub and offered to drive her to meet friends at a Mornington hotel. But instead he drove her to a dark street and raped her.
"Your brutal conduct must be denounced by this court," Judge Dean said.
Australians going overseas have been warned on numerous occasions that they are subject to the laws applying in those countries. This decision indicates that visitors to this country are entitled to have the values of their home country taken into account if they break our laws.
This is not even a case of a newly arrived person committing the act. Sharifi has been here since 2001 and in the twelve years since has had plenty of time to gain an understanding of our values had he chosen to do so. Australian cultural values apply here, and should continue to do so.
Rape is rape in any culture. This decision devalues our cultural mores.