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Vic flamethrower rapist loses appeal bid

AAP logoAAP 25/11/2016 Melissa Meehan

A man wielding a home-made flamethrower who raped a teenager in a Melbourne laneway in broad daylight has lost his bid to appeal his conviction.

Abdirizak Hashi, 31, was convicted of raping a 15-year-old girl in Carlton on November 20, 2014 after he threatened her with flames from an aerosol deodorant that he ignited with a lighter.

Hashi, who pleaded guilty to the rape and an armed robbery at a Northcote petrol station 30 to 45 minutes later, argued the two offences should have been heard separately.

He claimed by holding the trials together, the jury could have unfairly concluded that he was a "person of bad character or had a tendency to commit crimes", thereby preventing him from getting a fair trial.

Supreme Court Justices David Ashley, Anne Ferguson and Christopher Beale dismissed his application earlier this month.

In their judgment, published on Friday, the judges said there had been a "high degree of similarity" in the accounts of the rape victim and the petrol station attendant, which included the man spraying himself with deodorant and then using the spray and a lighter to shoot flames at his victims in a threatening manner.

Hashi was sentenced in December last year to eight years' jail with a five-year minimum and placed on the sex offenders register for 15 years.

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