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Two New Zealand NRIs, Kirti Ram and Manish Kumar Tyagi jailed for raping a 17-year-old schoolgirl


Two NRI chefs on trial in New Zealand for rape of 17-year-old school girl


Christchurch, New Zealand, November 20, 2007
Gurmeet Singh

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 connection.

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, 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.

Two NRIs jailed 19 years for raping a 17-year-old schoolgirl


Christchurch, July 06, 2006
Gurmeet Singh

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 children.

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.