Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Boy's rapists jailed for 15 years

Two men have been jailed at Manchester Crown Court for raping a teenage boy

A former intelligence officer in Saddam Hussein's Iraqi regime has been jailed for 15 years along with a law firm worker for raping a teenage boy in the toilets of a city-centre department store.

Abdelkader El-Janabi, 55, and Alex Wilson-Fletcher, 42, abducted their 14-year-old victim in Manchester's Arndale Centre on a busy Saturday afternoon last summer. They marched him to the toilets of a nearby Debenhams store where the "sustained attack" on him took place.

Wilson-Fletcher, of Oldham Street, Manchester, and El-Janabi, of Artillery Court, Ardwick, Manchester, were convicted by a jury of two counts of rape and two counts of sexual assault following a nine-day trial in April.

The pair were tracked down after images from CCTV were circulated around the UK by police.

Sentencing them at Manchester Crown Court, Judge Michael Leeming QC told them: "In all probability, what you did to him in his formative years will stay with him. Neither of you thought of that at the time. You were more concerned with your own sexual gratification."

The judge heard the boy was heading home by himself in Manchester city centre on June 2 last year when he decided to use the toilets in the Arndale Centre, despite being wary of public conveniences.

This is where El-Janabi grabbed the teenager by the arm and led him out with Wilson-Fletcher following. The court heard the boy was told: "Come with us. Do what we say. If you try to run we'll get you." The judge said: "(The victim) did not want to accompany either of you but he felt he had no choice."

He said El-Janabi knew the Debenhams toilets well and had been caught loitering there in the past by shop staff who had ejected him from the store.

El-Janabi was the one who physically raped the teenager, the court was told, but Wilson-Fletcher was convicted of taking part in a joint enterprise by the jury. Judge Leeming told Wilson-Fletcher he was "at least a look-out" and encouraged the other defendant.

He said he did not see any distinction between the two men in terms of setting an appropriate prison term. The court heard both men continue to claim they are innocent and Judge Leeming said El-Janabi had not shown "any remorse, empathy or insight".

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