Australia: Killer jailed for 36 years over horrific rape and murder of Israeli-Arab student Aya Maasarwe

Australia: Killer jailed for 36 years over horrific rape and murder of Israeli-Arab student Aya Maasarwe

Australian murderer Codey Herrmann has been sentenced to 36 years in jail for the horrific rape and murder of Israeli-Arab student Aya Maasarwe in Melbourne earlier this year.

The murder sparked a wave of anger about violence towards women in Australia, prompting vigils that were attended by thousands of people.

A judge jailed the killer for a maximum of 36 years with a non-parole period of 30 years, calling it an “unsophisticated, opportunistic, savage attack”.

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Aya Maasarwe, a 21-year-old Israeli-Arab student was murdered while she was speaking on FaceTime with her sister. She was brutally attacked in North Melbourne after a night out with friends, and her partially-naked body was found in bushes the following morning.

Aya, who was five months into a year-long exchange program at Melbourne’s LaTrobe University, was riding a tram home from a comedy club to Bundoora before she was met by Codey Herrmann around midnight.

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She got off a tram outside a shopping center and called her sister, who was in Israel, to catch up, but as they were talking she was attacked. Aya is believed to have dropped the phone as the horrendous crime was committed, and her sister then “heard voices” and alerted police.

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Herrmann struck her with a metal pole before raping her and inflicting other fatal violence, the court heard. He then set her body alight in an attempt to cover up his crime.

At the time, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called it an “incredibly shocking, despicable and tragic attack”.