“Tinder rapist” faces up to 20 years in jail

“Tinder rapist” faces up to 20 years in jail

French courts are yet again occupied with Moroccan men accused of rape, with the latest a photographer from Casablanca.

Salim Berrada faces up to 20 years in prison after being accused of raping and sexually assaulting 17 women between 2014 and 2016, local newspaper Le Parisien reported. 

Dubbed the “Tinder rapist”, a Paris criminal court recommended a “very severe” sentence to be handed out to the 38-year-old as we enter the tenth day of his trial. 

Berrada, then a fashion photographer, would reportedly arrange to meet his victims – after online encounters – in his studio for “photo shoots”. 

One of the plaintiffs who gave evidence against him, known as “Charline” for privacy reasons, recalled like others had done before her and since, how Berrada invited her in his Paris-based studio and greeted her with numerous alcoholic beverages. She then stated that she had become unusually drunk and was unaware of her surroundings which Berrada took advantage of and proceeded to have non consensual sexual intercourse with her. 

Charline, 26, was 18 at the time of the encounter, 12 years younger than Mr Berrada, and was the youngest plaintiff to give evidence at the court. The majority of the plaintiffs were in their early twenties at the time of meeting Berrada. 

Advocate General Philippe Courroye said a hefty sentence was deserved due to the number of victims attracted to the 38-year-old via dating sites, and the “dangerousness” of this “insatiable egocentric hunter” who has disputed all the facts. Courroye added that Berrada had “destroyed 17 lives” (13 rapes and 4 sexual assaults).

Throughout the trial, Berrada would often have abused hurled at him by those giving evidence when he spoke and severely downplayed his actions, once saying “Some lie and for others, I have doubts” and when a women gave evidence against him he claimed, “At no time while we were sleeping together did she say ‘No, stop’ to me.” 

READ: Morocco’s world cup star facing rape accusation in Paris

His dismissive attitude to the serious allegations brought against him prompted the prosecutor to question his unusual act , calling the defendant “cold” and “calculated” as well as having “no capacity for introspection”. 

In February 2023, Moroccan pop star Saad Lamjarred, 37, was handed a six-year prison sentence after being found guilty of raping a woman in a hotel in Paris. 

When Lamjarred was arrested in 2016, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI, who has awarded the singer the country’s highest national honour, intervened to cover his legal fees.  

In late February 2023, French judicial authorities began investigations into PSG and Morocco star Achraf Hakimi for rape. 

A 24-year-old woman said that the footballer had raped her at his home in the French capital and reported him to the local police shortly after. 

Despite the allegations, Paris Saint Germain have stood by him and he continues to feature on a regular basis for the French champions. 

Last year the club said in a statement, “The club supports the player, who has firmly denied the accusations and trusts the justice system. Paris St-Germain is an institution that promotes respect on and off the pitch.” 

A verdict on Berrada’s case is expected to be reached on the evening of March 29. 

Le Parisien/ Le Monde/ BFM TV


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