A Gisborne nightclub manager has been jailed for six years,
nine months for the sexual violation and indecent assault of
a 21-year-old employee.
Sessions nightclub manager Ravinder Singh was sentenced on
Friday in the Gisborne District Court after being found
guilty during a retrial in July.
The jury was unable to reach a decision on a third charge of
perverting the course of justice that arose out of an
allegation Singh, 35 - an Indian national who is married with
three children - had attempted to pay off the victim. The
charge was dismissed.
Judge Roy Wade rejected pleas for home detention, saying the
offending was too serious. Any remorse now belatedly
expressed by Singh was in self-pity, not for the woman, the
The club's security footage on the night of the offence,
coupled with a victim impact statement, were telling evidence
of the victim's ordeal.
Singh initially told police no sexual contact occurred but
was forced to change his story after DNA evidence linked him
to the complainant, the judge said.
Singh then claimed the complainant set out to seduce him on
behalf of her uncle, who had a grudge against him.
The offending had caused the woman serious emotional harm,
the judge said.
It involved planning and had breached the trust expected of
him as the woman's employer.
He had obviously become attracted to the victim, a student
working part time. She had asked him if she could download
some music from the nightclub computer for an upcoming family
Singh's first invitation for her to do so was sent after
midnight one evening as a text message; "lappie now
available". The woman did not respond but eventually visited
the nightclub with her cousin.
That evening, Singh supplied the pair with alcohol. When the
victim later went to the toilet, Singh followed and set upon
her. He pulled down her top, then pushed her into a cubicle
and forced her to perform oral sex on him.
"From first to last she made it obvious that there was no
consent. But you carried on, eventually stopping when you
thought there was a danger of being interrupted and found
out," the judge said.
"You were arrogant enough to believe that you were good
looking and that the victim might therefore go along with
what you wanted."
In her victim impact statement, the complainant talked of her
panic during the attack and how she was conscious that she
would be incapable of physically fighting off Singh. Instead
she managed to talk her way into him releasing her by saying
that her cousin would soon come looking for her.
Her emotional trauma resulted in her being unable to work for
She had given up her studies and was now wary of strangers.
She wanted Singh in custody for as long as possible "to
protect other females".
- The Gisborne Herald