Two NRI chefs
on trial in New Zealand for rape of 17-year-old school girl
Christchurch, New Zealand, November
Two NRIs Kirti Ram, 41 and Manish Kumar Tyagi, 31 are on trial
in Christchurch, New Zealand, for the rape of a 17-year-old schoolgirl
who had run away from home.
Judge Graeme Noble told the jury the retrial of the two men –
both chefs at the Two Fat Indians restaurant in Christchurch –
had been ordered for technical reasons. It is expected to last
up to two weeks.
NRI Manish Kumar Tyagi, 31, denies indecent assault, three charges
of rape, and one of attempted sexual violation by unlawful sexual
NRI Kirti Ram, 41, denies charges of indecent assault, two of
sexual violation, three of rape, and two of attempted sexual violation
by unlawful sexual connection
Kerryn Beaton, Crown prosecutor said that the two men took advantage
of a girl who had run away from home and trusted them to help
her. But when they took her back to the restaurant she was subjected
to a prolonged sexual attack.
According to Stuff.co.nz, she believed the defence would suggest
that the girl was a prostitute and had consented to the acts complained
of. But she said the girl was crying, fighting, and distressed
during the assault and did not consent, and was not doing it for
money, said Miss Beaton. The crown will call about 20 witnesses.
NRIs jailed 19 years for raping a 17-year-old schoolgirl
Christchurch, July 06, 2006
Two NRIs Kirti Ram, 40, and Manish Kumar Tyagi,
30, who were chefs at the Two Fat Indians restaurant, jailed for
10 years and nine years respectively for raping a 17-year-old
schoolgirl back to the restaurant and subjected her to sexual
indecencies over a three-hour period on January 2 last year. She
made her escape when she was being led to a taxi afterwards.
According to Christchurch press, the men alleged in the trial
that the sex had been consensual and had been arranged for payment.
But the jury convicted the men after a trial lasting more than
a week. It convicted Ram on three charges of sexual violation
by rape, two of having unlawful sexual connection, one of indecent
assault, and two of attempted sexual violation. It convicted Tyagi
on three charges of sexual violation by rape, one of having unlawful
sexual connection, one of indecent assault, and one of attempted
sexual violation. The girl provided the court with a detailed
description of the effects of the offending - a seven-page report.
Ram's defence counsel James Rapley said his client had left India
to work in New Zealand and send money back to his wife and four
There were fears for the family with the father imprisoned as
a rapist and unable to support them. "There is a very real
fear that none of the daughters will be able to marry as a result
of what's happened to their father," he said. Tyagi's defence
counsel Simon Shamy said it was a tragedy for the family. Tyagi
had two children - one born in the last fortnight - and his wife
would try to stay on in Christchurch as long as she was allowed.
"Mrs Tyagi is a major victim in this," he said. Crown
prosecutor Pip Currie said the girl had been subjected to a range
of humiliating indecencies over a long period. The offenders showed
no remorse and seemed to be blaming the victim and making excuses.
Judge Abbott said he believed drinking alcohol at a function
during the day had impaired the men's judgment. He said other
evidence - from the girl's boyfriend, who received distressed
phone calls from her during the incident, and from the taxi driver
- backed up her story. There was also medical evidence of injuries
to her genitals. He referred to a breach of trust by Ram, who
was first approached by the girl, who was lost in Christchurch,
after arriving on a bus after a family argument. "She had
been brought up to trust Indian men and she believed she could
trust your assurance that your wife and family were at the restaurant
and you would get or direct her to the bus terminal (to return
home)," he said. He jailed Ram for 10 years with a minimum
non-parole period of five years, and Tyagi received a nine-year
term with a minimum term of four-and-a-half years. Both men wept
at times during the long sentencing, where all of the judge's
remarks were translated sentence by sentence into Hindi.