LONDON: An Indian student, who raped a TV star in a London hotel last October, has been locked up for 10 years by a city court.
Soby John, 25, committed the crime after breaking in the victim’s room in the posh hotel where he was temporarily given shift work as a porter even as he awaited deportation to India for overstaying his student visa.
The incident happened in the early hours of October 24 when the victim, who was heavily drunk, was dropped at the hotel by her female friend.
John saw the drunk woman staggering in the corridor and being helped to her bed by her female friend.
He used his position as a porter to get a copy of the electronic key to the victim’s room. He unlocked the woman’s room and raped her.
According to the prosecution, John forced himself on the victim as she lay in her bed. When she woke up later, she found “an Asian man on top of her having sex with her and felt immobilized and unable to defend herself.
“She felt his hand on her neck as she pushed him away but then she drifted into unconsciousness.’’
He also took her intimate photos on his phone. And to make it appear as if it was consensual sex, he sent an sms from her phone to him, saying, “Hey John you enjoy me thanks.’’
The Indian student used a pair of latex glove as a sort of condom. The sperm from the gloves helped police nail him down as it matched his DNA.
He pleaded guilty in February.
The defence pleaded leniency for John as he had no previous criminal record either in India or the UK, adding that his client is someone who was “floundering in a culture which he hadn’t quite come to terms with.’’
But the court was harsh while handing him down 1o years behind bars on Monday.
Describing his crime as a ‘wicked rape,’’ the judge said that “whatever cultural values you were brought up with, I do not for a moment accept they condone the act of non-consensual intercourse with a woman who was so drunk as to be insensible.’’
He will be deported to India after he serves his 10-year jail term. He reportedly comes from the state of Kerala.