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Two jailed for 'predatory and traumatic' gang rape of woman in Farnham

3 minute read
Two jailed for 'predatory and traumatic' gang rape of woman in Farnham

Published by the Eagle Radio News Team at 3:46pm 24th February 2020. (Updated at 4:33pm 24th February 2020)

Two men have been sentenced to 14 years each after being found guilty of the gang rape of a woman outside Farnham Library.

Nicolae Dragoi, 42, of Crondall Lane, Farnham and Constantin Ionescu, 36, of Station Hill, Farnham, followed their victim - who had spent the day in London with family members - along West Street in the early hours of Sunday, 9 December 2018 before both assaulting her close to the library building.

The court heard that the woman had returned to Farnham by train with her husband, but had got separated from him before she came across the two men, who raped her while she was intoxicated.

They were spotted by a member of the public who raised the alarm but both men had fled the scene before police arrived, leaving their victim lying on the ground.

Nicolae Dragoi and Constantin Ionescu
Jailed: Nicolae Dragoi (left) and Constantin Ionescu (right).

Following a media appeal which included CCTV images, a member of the public came forward with key information which led to the arrest of Ionescu on Monday, 17 December, closely followed by his work colleague Dragoi, on Tuesday, 18 December.

Prosecutors said Ionescu’s mobile phone had a screenshot of the media appeal and that day, he changed his appearance, realising he had been identified as one of the woman’s attackers.

Forensic testing matched DNA found on the victim to both of the men.

The men were sentenced at Guildford Crown Court today (Monday, 24 February) following a trial which lasted over two weeks.

Farnham Library
The incident happened outside the town's Library in 2018.

Detective Inspector Adam Tatton said:

“This was a predatory attack on a woman who was actively targeted by these two men.

"They pursued her throughout Farnham town centre and once isolated, subjected her to a traumatic assault.

“The impact on the victim and her family is far-reaching and it is hoped that this sentence will go some way in helping her to move forward."

Gareth Morgan, from the CPS, added:

“This was a truly appalling attack that targeted an extremely vulnerable woman, who had the misfortune to find herself alone and came across the defendants in the street.

“Both defendants would have been able to clearly see that she was under the influence of alcohol and it would have been obvious to them that she was in no position whatsoever to provide consent to any sexual activity.

“The fact that she was drunk was undoubtedly a reason why they preyed on her.

“Witnesses at the scene confirmed that and one of the defendants even admitted in a police interview that she was drunk, meaning he realised she was incapable of consent, and that he had failed to call for any form of assistance for her.”