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Men jailed for terrifying knifepoint burglary

PUBLISHED: 11:10 22 April 2010 | UPDATED: 16:56 07 September 2010

A NORWEGIAN student was sexually assaulted during a terrifying knifepoint burglary which has left her life in ruins, a court heard this week. The 23-year-old victim, who cannot be named, had a blade held to her throat and was made to strip

Ben McPartland

A NORWEGIAN student was sexually assaulted during a terrifying knifepoint burglary which has left her life in ruins, a court heard this week.

The 23-year-old victim, who cannot be named, had a blade held to her throat and was made to strip naked by Maslah Hassan, 19.

She was then sexually assaulted by his accomplice Mohammed Ali, 22, in the victim's flat on Kilburn High Road.

Blackfriars Crown Court heard on Friday how the pair were fuelled on drink and drugs and deliberately targeted the student when they burst into her room in the middle of the night on October 13 last year.

Her male flatmate was left with cuts on his arms after trying to fight off the two men during the horrific attack.

Both men were locked up indefinitely after Judge Daniel Worsley decided they were a danger to the public.

Sentencing Hassan and Ali to indefinite jail terms for the protection of the public, he said: "The effect on these utterly innocent people has been profound and devastating. Clearly she has suffered beyond measure and wholly unsurprisingly none of them felt they could go one living in that flat after what you had done.

"Their lives have to a large extent been ruined by the two of you."

The judge added: "The fact you were fuelled by alcohol and cocaine is not the slightest excuse and makes in retrospect the crime all the more terrifying."

Barrister Henry Gordon, prosecuting, described how another flatmate had heard the break-in and tried to call the victim to warn them.

But while she was calling, Hassan and Ali broke into the victim's bedroom.

The court heard how Hassan began quizzing the terrified student but already had information about her. He then made her undress at knifepoint.

Her flatmate then burst into the room armed with a pair of scissors but was fought back outside it

by Hassan.

While the two men struggled next door, Ali, who was still in the room with the student, groped her before exposing himself.

He then fled, grabbing a mobile phone and a laptop on his way out. The two flatmates then managed to barricade themselves in the bedroom and called police.

In an impact statement, the victim said: "When they broke into my flat they stole my independence to go out. I am too scared day or night to travel on my own."

Ali and Hassan, who pleaded guilty, were arrested by police in the days after their attack.

Hassan's barrister, Ravi Dogra, told the court that his client had grown up in war-torn Somalia and had been the victim of violence at the hands of his father.

Hassan's younger brother had also been murdered, according to Mr Dogra.

Ali's barrister, Tania Panagiotopoulou, told the court that her client was "disgusted with his own behaviour" on the attack.

Det Sgt Iain Maddison, of Camden's robbery squad, said after the case: "I am very pleased with the sentences given to these two men.

"This was a violent crime, which left the victims very distressed, and I am pleased they are able to see the men responsible being held to account."

Hassan, of Cholmondeley Avenue, Brent, was also convicted of a robbery in an internet cafe only two hours after the burglary had taken place.

During that attack. a member of staff in the store was head-butted for £20.

Hassan was told he must serve 1,188 days in prison before he can be considered for release.

Ali, of Creukhorne Road, Brent was told he must serve a minimum of 1,370 days behind bars before the parole board will consider him for release. He was also ordered to sign the sex offenders register for life.


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