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'A despicable act' - police welcome verdict as two men convicted of raping woman in Sunderland
06 Dec | 17:05

Saheed Rasoolli and Araz Abdulla will be sentenced on Monday, December 17 at Newcastle Crown Court

Two men have been convicted of raping a woman in a flat in Sunderland. 

Saheed Rasoolli, 30, and Araz Abdulla, 23, both had sex with the victim in a bedroom of a flat on Roker Avenue back in May 2018.

The pair both denied rape but a jury today (Thursday) found them guilty following a two-week trial at Newcastle Crown Court.

Chief Superintendent Sarah Pitt, of Northumbria Police, said: “This was a despicable act which caused a great deal of upset and distress to both the victim and the local community as a whole.

“Rasoolli and Abdulla both insisted their innocence throughout this case, but today they have been convicted of their crimes and must now face the consequences of their selfish actions.

“Rape is a horrific crime that has a devastating effect on victims and a corrosive impact on society. We will leave no stone unturned when pursuing perpetrators to ensure they are brought to justice.

“I am pleased that these two men are now set to face a significant amount of time behind bars and are unable to carry out any more appalling acts of this kind.

“I would like to praise the victim for her bravery throughout this investigation, as well as the team of detectives who worked incredibly hard to secure these convictions.

“There can be no doubt whatsoever that the streets of Sunderland are a safer place without Rasoolli and Abdulla.”

The court was told how the victim was waiting for a bus in the city centre on May 23 this year when she was approached by Rasoolli.

She was then taken back to a property on Roker Avenue and raped. Once Rasoolli had left the room, Abdulla then entered and forced himself on the victim.

The woman fled to a nearby shop and reported the offences to police.

Rasoolli, of Hylton Road, Sunderland, and Abdulla, of Roker Avenue, Sunderland, will be sentenced on Monday, December 17 at Newcastle Crown Court.

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