Greek Community Embroiled in Sydney Man’s Rape Conviction

By on April 4, 2015

A nightclub owner’s son, who sexually assaulted a teenage girl in a Sydney, Australia alley and bragged about taking her virginity, has been sentenced to at least three years’ jail.

The convicted rapist, who texted his friend “Was a sick night – took a chick’s virginity” after raping a woman in an alley behind a nightclub has received sympathy and support from some unlikely people— including the Greek Consul General and a Greek Orthodox priest.

Luke Andrew Lazarus, 23, was sentenced on March 27 to a maximum jail term of five years. District Court Judge Sarah Huggett described the attack as the “spontaneous and opportunistic” actions of a young man who felt a sense of “power and entitlement.”

Dozens of family members and friends who supported Lazarus during the trial gasped and sobbed as Judge Huggett handed down her sentence.

A string of prominent people, including the Consul General of Greece, Tsambico K Athanasas and the parish priest at St. George Greek Orthodox Church in Rose Bay, a Sydney suburb, vouched for the convicted rapist’s character.

Father Gerasimos Koutsouras said: “The possibility of imprisonment is completely undeserved for this promising young man.”

But court proceedings paint a completely different picture, according to a Sydney national newspaper.

The court heard that, in the early hours of May 12, 2013, the victim went to the Soho club on Victoria Street, Potts Point, with a friend after spending the previous hours drinking at her sister’s Sydney home and the nearby World bar. It was her first visit to Kings Cross.

Lazarus, who worked casually for his father, the part owner of Soho and the Eastern Hotel at Bondi Junction, approached the woman on the dance floor and told her he owned the club and invited her to the VIP area.

He led her by the hand to an exit door that opened on to the alley. The couple kissed but she said she wanted to return to her friend.

As she went to leave, Lazarus pulled her stockings and skirt down and said in aggressive tone, “Put your f—ing hands on the wall.”

He then told her to go down on her hands and knees and to “arch your back”.

The victim told the court that she was alone in a dark alley and frightened.

As he anally raped her, she said “I’m a virgin.”

After about 10 minutes, he gave her his mobile phone, which had a list of women’s names. He told her to add hers to the bottom of the list.

In cross-examination Lazarus’ attorney, Ian Lloyd, suggested the victim’s attitude towards the sexual encounter changed after seeing the list because she felt used or like a trophy. She denied this was the case.

In a text message to a friend the afternoon after the attack, Lazarus said: “I honestly have zero recollection of calling you … Was a sick night – took a chick’s virginity.”

His friend replied: “bahahahaha nice popping does cherries … ”

Lazarus replied: “… it’s a pretty gross story tell ya later”.

The note section of his phone also contained a list of female names, with his victim’s name appearing at the end of the list.

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