June 20 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Two “cold-blooded” sexual predators from Plaistow who took turns raping a student after plying her with booze have each been jailed for 10 years.
Ebrima Dampha, 33, and Amadou Bah, 34, targeted the 22-year-old after spotting her drunkenly leaning against a shop front in Brick Lane, Shoreditch.
The pair, both of Barking Road, Plaistow, offered to accompany her in a taxi home but then stopped at an off-licence to buy more alcohol.
They persuaded her to allow them into her flat before encouraging her to continue drinking, then raped her while she was barely conscious, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.
The duo then stole the woman’s iPhone and cash after the attack on January 6.
The woman had suffered significant trauma as a result of her ordeal, the court was told.
Both men insisted she invited them home with the promise of sex and denied rape.
But a jury convicted them of rape following a trial.
Sentencing, Judge John Lafferty told them: “This young woman unfortunately had far too much to drink than she was able to cope with.
“She was quite clearly, when you saw her leaning against a shop front, not capable of looking after herself.”
“You both formed a plan which you carried out to get this woman back to a place where you could have sex with her against her will.
“You encouraged and persuaded her to take more alcohol when you could see she was far from capable of looking after herself.”
“When she took so much alcohol she was semi-conscious or unconscious, you both took turns to rape her.”
“Upon leaving the flat, you stole her property.
“You acted together and took advantage of a young woman who by virtue of her intoxication was extremely vulnerable, when any decent man would seek to assist her.
“You put forward an entirely spurious account suggesting this perfectly respectable young woman wanted to have sex with both of you.
“At one point you said that was both at the same time, a thoroughly outrageous suggestion which the jury had no hesitation in rejecting.
“The young woman was vulnerable because of her extreme intoxication and you took shameless and coldblooded advantage of that.
“These sentences are the shortest that mark the gravity of the offence you committed, taking into account what little mitigation either of you have.”
Dampha, a ‘‘small scale’’ drug dealer, was also handed a further six months for possessing 11 bags of cannabis with intent to supply, breaching a community order.
Both will have to sign the sex offenders register for life on their release from prison.
Andrew Cohen, defending Dampha, said: “He was not the principal within this particular offence. It was not him that approached the complainant or engaged in conversation and got in the position of being invited back to her flat.
“He followed on and appeared to take advantage of a situation that came into existence.”
The court was told Bah suffers from a long-term drink problem.