Bail for pub sex assault accused
A MAN accused of sexually assaulting a woman as she stepped out of a Sydney pub is a refugee living in Australia on a bridging visa.
And this contributed to Sayer Alenezi, 38, being granted bail in Parramatta Bail Court on Saturday.
Acting Magistrate John Bailey told the court Alenezi’s trouble speaking English “would make it difficult” for him in custody “to prepare a defence to his case”.
In considering whether to release Alenezi, Magistrate Bailey said the case against him was not “weak” but “certainly could be a lot stronger”.
Alenezi, of Yennora in Sydney’s west, is accused of the aggravated sexual assault of an intoxicated 22-year-old woman after she stumbled out of the Courthouse Hotel on Oxford St, Surry Hills, at 1.30am on October 27.
Police allege Alenezi targeted the woman because she was drunk and separated from her friends. He allegedly linked arms with the woman before walking her almost 1km to Turner Lane in Woolloomooloo, where he is accused of sexually assaulting her between 2.30am and 3.30am.
The woman told a friend about the alleged attack before going to Sutherland Hospital.
Alenezi was charged with two counts of aggravated sexual assault and inflicting actual bodily harm on Friday.
Police opposed bail being granted, with the prosecutor telling the court Alenezi randomly targeted the woman because she was intoxicated, claiming this meant he was capable of further attacks.
“The victim was not known to the accused. That contributes to risk of endangering the community,” the prosecutor told the court.
The prosecutor told the court there was extensive CCTV footage of Alenezi’s movements at the time of the alleged incident, DNA evidence and partial admissions made in his arrest interview.
Police are now considering further charges once medical evidence had been analysed.
Alenezi’s Legal Aid lawyer told the court there were problems with the crown case and that consent would be an issue.
“There were no attempts made to stop the accused,” the lawyer told the court. The lawyer argued Alenezi’s matter would take a long time to get to trial and combined with his “minimal English skills” this added up to hardship that supported his case for bail.
The court heard Alenezi was a refugee who arrived in Australia on a bridging visa.
Magistrate Bailey ordered Alenezi to report to Fairfield Police Station daily, abide by an 8pm to 8am curfew, and not go within 5km of the CBD.
The court heard Alenezi had unknown health conditions, was not employed and was receiving Centrelink benefits. He was ordered to appear at the Downing Centre Local Court on January 15.
CCTV footage of Alenezi.