Wednesday, September 3, 2008

'Blinding' rapist may get lesser sentence

A Sydney court has heard a rapist who tried to blind one of his victims with glue and gunpowder could be given a discounted sentence because of his guilty plea.

Mark James Dennis, 38, pleaded guilty in April to 13 charges related to attacks on women in Sydney's west.

He pleaded guilty the day his trial was listed to start.

In a statement of facts, presented at a District Court's sentencing hearing, police say one of his victims was a woman who was raped in front of her four-year-old child in 2003.

They say Mark Dennis then tried to glue her eyes shut before pouring gunpowder into them and igniting it.

One of the charges, which is applying an explosive substance to a person with intent to burn, carries a maximum 25 year prison term.

But Judge Hock said she will consider a discounted jail sentence because a guilty plea by Mark Dennis saved his victims the ordeal of giving evidence at a trial.

Mark Dennis remains in protective custody in Parklea Prison.

The matter will return to court in November.


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