Congregation shocked to hear of prolific rapist in their midst

10 January 2020

REUTERS

Reynhard Sinaga was sentenced to life imprisonment on Monday for sexual offences against almost 200 young men

Reynhard Sinaga was sentenced to life imprisonment on Monday for sexual offences against almost 200 young men

THE most prolific rapist in British legal history was sentenced to life imprisonment on Monday for sexual offences against almost 200 young men.

Reynhard Sinaga, aged 36, a mature student from Indonesia, was sentenced for a minimum of 30 years for 136 rapes against dozens of young men in Manchester.

He attended St Chrysostom’s, Victoria Park, but is understood not to have held any position or to have been an active member of the congregation. The congregation are said to have been shocked by the news.

Greater Manchester Police believe that Mr Sinaga abused at least 195 men over two-and-a-half years, preying on them after they had been on nights out, luring them into his flat, and drugging them.

Over the course of four trials, he was proved to have committed 159 offences, including 136 rapes, which he filmed on two mobile phones. Forty-eight victims testified at court; police are yet to identify 70.

The judge at his final trial, Suzanne Goddard QC, described Mr Sinaga as a “dangerous, deeply disturbed, and perverted individual with no sense of reality”.

She said: “You are an evil serial sexual offender who preyed on young men who came into the city centre wanting nothing more than a good night with their friends.”

He was caught when an A-level student woke up, tackled him, and then found Mr Sinaga’s phone, which was handed into police; evidence was then discovered on the device.

A spokeswoman for Manchester diocese said this week: “Reynhard Sinaga is guilty of the most appalling crimes. We utterly condemn his actions, and our thoughts and prayers today go out to his victims. Clergy, and others in our churches who work with those affected by abuse, are ready to offer support to any affected by these horrific revelations.

“We can confirm that Reynhard Sinaga did worship occasionally at a city-centre church, and it appears that nobody who came into contact with him had any inkling of his crimes. He did not hold any positions of responsibility at the church.”

The Guardian reported that St Chrysostom’s provided a character reference for Mr Sinaga, but this is understood to have been provided by a private individual in a personal capacity.

Ms Goddard said: “It is almost beyond belief that someone who could profess some Christian faith could, at the same time, have been committing such wicked and evil crimes.”

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