Notorious Sydney serial rapist Mohammed Skaf has been granted parole, with his release expected next month.
Mohammed Skaf has been behind bars for more than 20 years for his role in the gang rapes of at least six schoolgirls in public parks and toilets around Sydney’s south-west in 2000.
His brother, Bilal Skaf, remains behind bars for orchestrating the gang rapes.
Mohammed, 38, has been eligible for parole since 2018 and has previously been knocked back three times but today the State Parole Authority (SPA) granted him parole on strict conditions.
In a statement, the SPA said community safety was “best protected” by supervising Scaf with “stringent conditions”.
SPA chairman David Frearson SC said parole for the final two years of his sentence was the safest pathway for his reintegration into society.
“This is the only opportunity to supervise a safe transition into the community in the small window of time that we have left,” he said.
“Release without structure or supervision makes little sense for community protection.”
Scaf must adhere to strict parole conditions which include:
- Mandatory electronic monitoring with daily schedules
- Compliance with ongoing psychological intervention
- A ban on any form of contact with his victims
- A ban on contact with any co-offenders
- Exclusion zone orders for the local government areas of Liverpool, Fairfield, Blacktown and Parramatta.
Before making its decision, the SPA said it considered the unanimous expert advice of the Serious Offenders Review Council, Community Corrections and the latest submission on behalf of the state.
“All three expert bodies supported a period of supervision on parole,” the SPA said.
Skaf will be released from custody on a date not earlier than October 1 and not later than October 8.
Skaf didn’t take trial seriously: former prosecutor
Former Crown prosecutor Margaret Cunneen SC led the case against the Skaf brothers.
She said the crimes shocked her, particularly just how many men were involved.
“By the use of mobile phones, more and more men arrived at the locations. One of the longest ordeals was for a young woman who was raped by 14 men over six hours,” Ms Cunneen said.
“At the end she was hosed down on a cold winter’s night. So it was really shocking, it was abhorrent, it was degrading.”
Ms Cunneen said Mohammed Skaf didn’t take the trial seriously.
“[The accused gang members] were all misbehaving in the dock like it was a great joke,” she said.
“It was clear that although they probably knew their offences were wrong, they had no idea how the public had viewed their offences so seriously.”
She said releasing Skaf on parole would be a safer option than waiting until his sentence had run its course.
“At least if he is released on parole before the end of his sentence he will be subject to very, very strict supervision by the Parole Authority.
“He has also spent the whole of his adult life in prison, so it is important for society that he is reintegrated. I believe he has an offer of employment and ties in the community to assist him to do that.
“If he was released when his sentence ends on January 1, 2024 he would have no supervision whatsoever, and the community would be more at risk.” Ms Cunneen added.
She said the lack of remorse shown by Skaf was part of why he was originally given a long sentence.
“In a sense he was punished for that, and it is not uncommon for prisoners to leave without showing any remorse.”Internet Explorer Channel Network