Victims of flat of horror:
Inside the Manchester flat of horror and abuse
THE men attacked by Reynhard Sinaga were all different - but similar - in that they were all masculine, athletic, attractive young men.
Many were studying at university, some freshers starting a new life in Manchester, away from home for the first time.
The youngest was just 17-years-old, the oldest 36.
All but two of these men identify as heterosexual. One told a court he was ‘bi-curious.’
Regardless of sexuality, every single one said they would have had absolutely no interest in any sexual activity with Sinaga.
And all but one were completely oblivious to the fact that they had been sexually abused until police told them.
I knew there were still people on the streets so it was pretty safe to walk home on my own.
One student told court, describing how he was ‘really drunk’ when he walked out of Fifth nightclub and into Sinaga’s sights.
The young man started to feel sick and stopped at the Oxford Street ‘padlock’ bridge to steady himself.
He felt a tap on his shoulder, and turned around to see Sinaga, who asked if he was OK. “Just really drunk”, the student replied. Sinaga insisted that he came up to his flat, saying it was just ‘30 seconds away.’
“You’re too drunk, I live here, just come to mine, it’s fine”, he said.
The student’s home was very close.
But as he put it: “In my eyes (Sinaga) was a young student, in the same position as I am, helping me out.”
Once inside his flat, Sinaga ushered the lad towards a ‘comfy-looking’ pile of cushions and blankets on the floor and offered him what he thought was a glass of water. He drank it and fell asleep.
He woke up to see Sinaga reading in bed. He felt reassured.
“I felt more at ease that he was sitting on the bed maybe looking over me to make sure I’m not sick in my sleep,’’ the witness later recalled. The next day he woke at 10am, embarrassed because his trousers were wet, and left the flat with no idea of the horrors he had been subjected to over the course of several hours.
“It’s stupid,” he said, when asked why he had gone back to the flat, despite living nearby, by Richard Littler QC, Sinaga’s defence barrister. “In the moment my head’s spinning, I’m feeling sick.”
Putting suspicion to the back of the mind was something a number of men who encountered Reynhard Sinaga would describe doing.
One student had been waiting for his girlfriend when Sinaga suggested he come back to his flat for a drink and wait for his girlfriend there.
“Initially I said ‘no, no, it’s fine’ and then he said ‘it’s fine just come and wait,’ and I agreed,’’ the man said.
“I thought he was a student and, at the time in September, Freshers would have been around that time and that’s how you possibly make friends.”
The young man woke up to see Sinaga patting the bed. “I completely freaked out, got up and just ran out the door,” he would later testify.
His last memory, before passing out, had been of being given a tasteless, clear drink.
Films taken by Sinaga would prove that this witness had been sexually assaulted three times.
The thought that ‘something might have happened’ had been dismissed from the man’s mind, until detectives came and found him a year later.
Another witness didn’t even remember meeting Sinaga, and had no memory of how
he ended up in his apartment. The last thing he remembered was parting company with a friend outside the Factory nightclub and going to get the bus.
His story is particularly harrowing.
But his friend recalled a panicked conversation they had, the morning after a night out at Factory, and recalled it to the jury.
“It’s a specific memory”, the friend told court.
“(My friend) said: ‘I have just woken up on some strange Asian man’s floor.’
“He was panicky and confused.
“He said he was completely naked and in a pool of his own vomit. He said his clothes were next to him in a pile.”
The man would himself tell jurors how he found himself face down on the floor.
“I felt sick, I felt like I had been drugged and I was trying to piece together how I got there,’’ he said.
“I felt very weak, my pupils were dilated and I didn’t feel like I had only drunk alcohol that night.
“When I woke up I saw a man in the bed 5-10 metres away from where I was.
“He was also naked.”
Fleeing the apartment in panic, the man suspected the worst. “I suspected that someone had raped me,” he said.
“That has never happened to me before.
The rapist had an all-consuming obsession with abusing sleeping men, but to another victim, an expectant dad, ‘he seemed like the nicest bloke anyone could meet’.
This man was on a night out in Manchester from another city.
He left a bar to buy cigarettes, got lost and ended up wandering the streets looking for his accommodation after his phone battery died. “I kept on walking around looking for the apartment,” he said in evidence.
“Every time I kept walking around I kept getting to the same point again and again and again.
“I was getting nowhere which is when I gave up and sat down on a building site.
“I was sat there and all of a sudden this bloke turned up and called himself Graham.
“I informed him my phone battery had died and he said he had a charger.
“He said it was at his flat around the corner. “He seemed like a nice enough bloke. “He said he was going to help me get charged. At this point I was happy with any help. I was stuck.”
He remembers sitting cross legged with Sinaga on the floor of his apartment while his phone charged.
He then blacked out and woke up in a bed.
Sinaga had carried - or dragged him there. “He seemed like the nicest bloke anyone could meet really.
“I had no reason to even think anything bad of him,” he told a jury.
“I thought it was a bit odd but I thought he had just done a good deed and I’m quite believing in people really.
“He asked for a hug and I gave him a hug.” The victim later told friends ‘what a nice guy’ he was.
“That sort of blacking out and not knowing what had happened.”
“I’m a happily married man and I had a fiancé at the time and I would never have done anything to put that in jeopardy because we planned to get married.”
When his now-wife returned home she found her partner ‘really upset, very teary, very anxious, really scared.
He stayed in bed all day, still apparently affected by the drugs, and suffered ‘at least two’ panic attacks, she said.