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article imageAustralian court hears of Dutch woman tortured and raped 60 times

By Robert Myles     Jul 14, 2013 in Crime
Melbourne - A procedural hearing took place at a court in Melbourne, Australia on Friday at which the court heard allegations of a 21-year-old Dutch woman held captive by a couple for six weeks and raped more than 60 times.
In an unprecedented case in, an Australian couple are charged with imprisoning a young Dutch tourist for six weeks. During the Dutch woman’s lengthy unlawful detention, prosecutors say the alleged victim was tortured with implements ranging from a rolling pin to a vacuum cleaner and raped more than 60 times, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.
The accused couple, Alfio Anthony Granata, 46, and Jennifer Peaston, 32, attended a procedural hearing, Friday, Peaston via videolink. Each of the accused faces a total of 179 charges comprising 62 counts of rape, at least 85 counts of assault, making threats to kill, drug offences and detaining a person against their will. The prosecution alleges the Dutch woman was held captive by the accused at an apartment in the Preston district of Melbourne in November and December 2012.
According to Australian prosecutors, Granata and Peaston met their alleged victim at a party in Melbourne’s St. Kilda district in October. Initially the two accused had engaged in consensual ‘threesomes’ and recreational drugs. But later, say the prosecution, events took a more sinister turn when the accused Granata became violent towards both the alleged victim and his co-accused, such that the Dutch tourist could not leave the apartment.
Prosecutors say they’ve assembled more than 450 hours of video evidence against the two accused, documenting the alleged victim’s six-week ordeal. They say the Dutch woman was repeatedly raped and assaulted, that she was blindfolded, hog-tied and forced to eat scraps of food to survive. Granata and Peaston are accused of using a variety of implements to assault, rape and torture the alleged victim. Implements mentioned in prosecution papers include a rolling pin, a vacuum cleaner, an oil lamp and other utensils.
The Dutch woman’s suffering, says the prosecution, only ended when, on Christmas Day 2012, she first stabbed Granata then attempted suicide, reports the Herald Sun. The two accused are said to have panicked and called emergency services. Their alleged victim was taken to hospital on December 25 suffering from multiple injuries.
For Granata, his lawyer asked the magistrate at the procedural hearing to ordain the prosecution to present its case as soon as possible as his client was “in custody waiting anxiously” to hear the case against him.
At a previous court hearing, a police summary had been submitted to the court which claimed the Dutch tourist was subjected to constant sexual and physical abuse during her six week alleged unlawful detention. The summary made reference to the victim’s “mental trauma” and a mysterious “death ritual.” A detective had said the victim referred to Granata claiming he was possessed by an ancestor and going through a ritual involving sealing an envelope with the victim’s photo, finger and toenails, a piece of hair and her blood to symbolise that her "being was no more." The earlier hearing had also been told of police seizures of webcam footage allegedly showing accused Granata committing various sexual acts and acts of violence against the woman involving a variety blindfolds, chains and sex-toys.
At Friday’s procedural hearing, the magistrate again remanded Granata and Peaston in custody to await their next court appearance scheduled for August 30.
More about Dutch woman raped in Australia, Australian multiple rape case, Granata Peaston trial, criminal law, multiple rape
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