MANCHESTER: To those who knew him, Indonesian student Reynhard Sinaga was an “engaged member of society” who was studying for a PhD at Leeds University.
But behind closed doors, the 36-year-old student preyed on more than 190 men in Manchester, drugging them before sexually abusing them while filming the attacks.
Over two and a half years, Sinaga remained unknown to the police until one of his victims woke up during an assault and fought him off, before reporting the Indonesian student to the police.
READ: ‘Kind, quiet man turned monster’: Friends of Indonesian serial rapist Reynhard Sinaga shocked by crimes
Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said on Monday (Jan 6) – after Sinaga was sentenced to life imprisonment for 159 counts of sexual offences against 48 men – that there were about 70 victims who have yet to be identified.
Investigation teams found evidence linking him to more than 190 victims, police said.
“NOT MUCH WAS KNOWN ABOUT SINAGA”
Assistant Chief Constable Mabs Hussain, of Greater Manchester Police, said: “Reynhard Sinaga is a depraved individual, who targeted potentially vulnerable men that he had spotted walking on their own after a night out.”
He led his victims back to his flat under false pretences of offering a place to rest or to charge their mobile phones.
Once inside he offered them a drink which would contain what police believe to be date rape drug gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), rendering them unconscious.
He would then rape them while filming the abuse. His final victim woke up during the assault and reported Sinaga to the police.
“Not much was known about Reynhard Sinaga prior to his final victim telling police of his ordeal. He had never previously come to the attention of GMP with regards to any criminal incidents,” ACC Hussain said.
“To the rest of the world he came across as an engaged member of society who was studying for a PhD qualification and had a small circle of law-abiding friends that he would socialise with.
“However, beneath that facade was a serial sex offender, who we now believe to be Britain’s most prolific rapist.
“The fact that he was able to cover-up his true nature for so long just serves as further evidence of his calculating criminal nature.
“I want to be clear that Sinaga is just one appalling individual and he should not be considered as being reflective of any community.
“I do not wish to waste another word on Reynhard Sinaga.”
Sinaga was sentenced in four separate trials. After his first two trials, he was already serving 88 concurrent life sentences with a minimum of 20 years before he can be considered for parole.
Monday’s sentencing came after the third and fourth trial. His story came to light only on Monday because of court restrictions.
ONE ASSAULT LASTED EIGHT HOURS
Police officers discovered 3.29TB of graphic material of the sexual assaults. One video showed an assault lasting eight hours.
Many of the victims were so affected by the drug that they did not know they had been raped until they received a knock on the door from officers investigating Sinaga’s crimes, police explained.
The victims were traced using items found inside the flat, including victims’ stolen phones and IDs.
The assistant chief constable said: “I would now like to pay tribute to his victims, many of whom did not know for certain what had happened to them until they received a visit from the police, after they had been identified from the videos taken by Sinaga.
“I can only imagine how devastating this news must have been for them but the bravery that these men have shown in engaging with officers and support workers in an effort to come to terms with what happened is nothing short of incredible.”
Many of the men stood in court and provided evidence, detailing the impact the rapes had on their lives.
“We appreciate this can be a daunting experience and it truly does take a lot of courage to stand up in court and tell your story,” ACC Hussain added.
Sinaga was a “vile individual” who preyed on his victims in a “disturbing and depraved manner”, said Bev Hughes, Greater Manchester’s deputy mayor for policing, crime and criminal justice.
“I particularly want to praise the victims and survivors for their bravery and courage throughout these trials – it has been an immensely challenging and upsetting time,” she added.
“I also want to urge anyone who has been a victim of any rape or sexual assault to come forward and report it to police, confident that they will receive the help and support they need.
“Greater Manchester is a resilient place. We have undergone traumas in the past and, together, come through them. Sinaga is an appalling individual, who acted alone and is now off our streets.”