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Friday 20 October 2017

Rapist who attacked his partner while she slept is jailed for 15 months

Norwegian Magnus Meyer Hustveit (Collins)
Norwegian Magnus Meyer Hustveit (Collins)
Niamh Ni Domhnall (Collins)

A Norwegian man given a suspended sentence for repeatedly raping his girlfriend while she slept has been re-sentenced to 15 months in jail after the Court of Appeal found his original term was "unduly lenient".

Magnus Meyer Hustveit (26) had pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to one count of rape and one count of sexual assault against his 28-year-old girlfriend between 2011 and 2012.

He was given a wholly suspended seven-year sentence by Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy on July 13, 2015.

Unusual

Hustveit - whose former partner waived her right to anonymity so that his identity could be published - returned to his native Norway after sentencing.

The Director of Public Prosecutions successfully sought a review of Hustveit's sentence yesterday.

Mr Justice Birmingham said it wasn't in dispute that this was an unusual case and "indeed an exceptional one".

Much of the offending behaviour occurred without the victim's knowledge and all of the offending was only known because of detailed admissions made by Hustveit in an email he sent to the victim following her request to find out what had happened to her.

Mr Justice Birmingham said the combination of a number of factors - Hustveit's cooperation, his voluntary return to Ireland to be charged, his previous good character, the positive life he was now leading in Norway - justified and required a sentence that would be appreciably less than would be normal in cases of multiple rapes.

However, Mr Justice Birmingham said the court could not agree that the case was so wholly exceptional as to warrant entirely non-custodial disposal and the sentencing judge "erred" in this regard.

It had been confirmed that Norway did not extradite its own citizens and considerable significance could be attached to the fact that Hustveit had returned voluntarily to face the review.

Mr Justice Birmingham said it would not have been possible for the lower court to require Hustveit to serve less than two-and-a-half years but now, at this stage, he would be required by the Court of Appeal to serve "half of that two-and-a-half year sentence".

Mr Justice Birmingham - who sat with Mr Justice Alan Mahon and Mr Justice John Edwards - said the original seven-year sentence would remain and all but 15 months of it would be suspended.

Hustveit made no reaction to the court's decision.

He was told once again that he would be on the sex offenders register.

He was required to enter into a good behaviour bond for seven years. When asked if he undertook to be so bound, Hustveit said "I do".

His victim Niamh Ni Domhnaill was in court with friends and supporters.

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