By: Gurbir Singh                                                                            Freelance Feature Writer & Journalist                  

Two Indians, Parampreet Singh, 27, and Amritpal Singh, 25, have been found guilty of raping a 17-year-old girl in Christchurch on December 23,2013.

On Thursday, Christchurch District Court Judge, David Saunders jailed Parampreet Singh for seven years and nine months, and Amritpal Singh for seven years and six months.  Parampreet was found guilty of two charges of raping the teenage girl first in a car, and then on the roof of the New Brighton Surf Club,Christchurch. Parampreet was cleared of a sexual violation charge. Amritpal was found guilty of sexual violation and rape.

As per the terms of the judgement, both will be deported from New Zealand as soon as they are released from prison.

The victim, who was aged 17 at the time of her double rape in Dec.2013, was present in court for the sentencing. She claimed to have first met Parampreet (‘Johnny’) on the dating site,Tagged.

Three trials were held in this case and a Punjabi interpreter was in court to assist during the trials. One was declared a mistrial, while in the second trial both the defendants were found guilty, but the verdicts were quashed by the Court of Appeal and a new trial was ordered.

During their trial, both men denied the charges and claimed they believed the girl had consented. Two juries, however, rejected their claim.

Exact immigration status of Parampreet and Amritpal in New Zealand is not known.

This is not the first case of rape involving Indians in this country.

Gurpinder Singh Brar, 25, and Amritpal Singh Sidhu, 21, are already serving seven years and eight years respectively in jail for kidnapping and raping a 38-year-old woman in Rotorua in September 2013. They also claimed it was consensual. Their first trial ended with a hung jury before the second jury found them guilty.