Eleven years for internet rapist

A 31 year old man was sentenced on Friday to 11 years in prison for 58 assaults against young girls he met on the Internet. At the end of his sentence he will also be deported.

Malmö district court in southern Sweden convicted Atheer Al Suhairy for 11 counts of rape and a long list of charges for taking sexual advantage of underage girls.

Prosecutor Ulrika Rogland, who pushed for a sentence of 12 years in prison, described the man as extremely manipulative and “a parent’s nightmare”.

Al Suhairy contacted girls over the Internet using the pseudonym ‘Alexandra’, alleging the character was a woman in her 30s. Under this identity, he became chat buddies with the girls on youth sites such as the popular Lunarstorm.

As Alexandra he built up the girls’ confidence in him and tricked them into sending pictures, supposedly for a modelling agency.

But he claimed that Alexandra was a real woman who was an intermediary who arranged the sexual favors on his behalf. Rogland said the evidence collected proved the man and Alexandra to be the same person.

The trial began in January and mostly dealt with the crimes committed in Malmö and Sundsvall from 1999 to 2005. The girls were between the ages of 12 and 18.

The inquiry began after a girl reported Al Suhairy to the police for rape in January 2005. But Lunarstorm had contacted the police about the 31 year old as far back as 2002. Even then he was calling himself Alexandra, but when he moved from Sundsvall to Malmö the investigation went cold.

Ulrika Rogland said she was very satisfied with the verdict.

“That was what I had wanted,” she told TT.

She will now look into the points of the prosecution where Al Suhairy was found not guilty, including two rapes, before deciding whether to appeal.

However, she said that she expected that the case would go to the Court of Appeal anyway, through an appeal from the defence.

Ulrika Rogland said that the case could set a precedent for similar incidents in future.