Prosecutors seek 12 years sentence for man who raped Australian woman

Prosecutors have asked the Supreme Court to impose a sentence of 12 years imprisonment for a man who raped an Australian woman last year.

Terry Faati, of Sinamoga and Siufaga Savai’i, has pleaded guilty to one count of raping a 30-year-old woman from Melbourne, Australia. 

A suppression order has been issued on the victim's identity. 

The Attorney General office's lawyer, Anne Matalasi, filed the prosecution's submission on Faati's recommended sentence on Wednesday. 

Ms. Matalasi argued there was a breach of trust between the defendant and the woman because Faati was her close friend. 

“She did not expect him to sexually assault her,” she told the Court.  “Instead, he proceeded to have sexual intercourse with her.” 

Faati is 32-years-old, married and unemployed. 

His lawyer, Tuala Iosefo Ponifasio, proposed a lighter sentence and argued that his client's guilty plea, apparent remorse and apology to the victim should be taken into consideration.

Justice Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke adjourned the matter to July 30 for sentencing. 

According to the summary of facts, on November 20 last year, the Australian woman was staying at a hotel in Apia.

On the day of the attack she was at a night club with other friends. 

The facts tendered to the court state that the woman was intoxicated and that the defendant, together with other friends, took her back to her hotel at around 1.00am the following day. 

The friends took a taxi to the hotel and the woman went inside her room and slept while the others continued drinking outside on the veranda. 

The defendant later went into the bedroom and sexually assaulted the victim while she slept, the facts state. 

The woman woke up, pushed Faati off and told him to leave. 

Faati initially pleaded not guilty to the charge. But on the day of a scheduled trial, he changed his plea to guilty and was given the opportunity to apologise to the woman before she left the country.   

He is a first time offender. 

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