WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
A patched gang member has been jailed after his assaults on two women left them permanently scarred.
Turanga Werata, 24, was sentenced in the Palmerston North High Court on Wednesday to 13 years' imprisonment for his violent, sexual offending, narrowly missing out on preventive detention.
In determining his sentence, Justice Susan Thomas said his relatively young age coupled with his willingness to engage in rehabilitation and the fact this was his first conviction for sexual offending, meant he would not receive preventative detention.
Instead the Black Power gang member would serve 13 years' with a minimum non-parole period of six years' and six months.
Werata's offending began in 2015 when he detained one of the victims. From February 10 until May 29 that year, he kept her confined to the house truck he was living in.
Werata threatened to cut the victim up and put her in a bag, which he said he would drop at her grandfather's house in a bid to give him a heart attack.
Justice Thomas said the victim left the house truck on a number of occasions during this period but, came back either voluntarily or because Werata's behaviour compelled her to.
Justice Thomas said Werata's behaviour satisfied the requirements of kidnapping.
During this period he also assaulted the victim multiple times including cutting her with razor blades, burning her with a cigarette and light bulb, urinating on her, hitting her twice with a closed fist, hitting her kidneys and banging her knee against a nail.
Between March 25-30, 2015 he jumped the fence of a property where the victim was sitting with one other person on a porch.
He hit her in the face with an aluminum baseball bat and, after she ran inside, hit her across the back of the legs.
He then punched her in the face causing her nose to bleed uncontrollably.
Werata met his second victim in 2014 after corresponding through Facebook.
He eventually met the teenager in person in June 2015 when she came to stay at his house truck.
After a week, Werata went out but returned later in the day to find her asleep. He punched her in the face because she had not done his washing.
Later that evening he punched her again in the face several times after she liked a picture on Facebook. He accused her of cheating on him.
He ripped off her clothes and began hitting her with a closed fist. She was then made to sit at the end of the bed with her nose against the wall.
Werata began hitting her with the cord of a hair straightener, causing her head to bleed. He then rolled her onto her stomach, sexually violating her with the object a number of times.
Werata continued his assault by punching and kicking her in the head and body. He also flicked cigarette ash on her and called her a whore.
Both victims suffered permanent scarring from the assaults.
A victim impact statement from the first victim said the offending had left her traumatised.
She is now wary of her surroundings and is afraid to leave her house. She suffers from nightmares most nights and has scars and burns on her body.
There was no victim impact statement from the second victim, however, Justice Thomas said it was fair to say the harm, both physically and psychologically, was obvious.
Werata has 27 prior convictions and has a history of violent offending.
He was transferred from the district court to the high court for sentencing, after psychologists found him to be at a high risk of re-offending.
- Manawatu Guardian