Codey Herrmann has been jailed for the rape and murder of international student Aiia Massarwe.
Codey Herrmann has been jailed for the rape and murder of international student Aiia Massarwe.

Aiia’s killer handed 30 year sentence for ‘savage attack’

An evil killer who raped and bashed to death international student Aiia Maasarwe in an unprovoked attack could be free in 30 years.

Codey Herrmann, 21, was today jailed for 36 years, but will be eligible for parole after serving 30.

Supreme Court judge Elizabeth Hollingworth called his crime "appalling".

"You struck her with the clear intention of killing her," Justice Hollingworth said.

"You quickly subjected her to a savage attack.

"The attack was entirely unprovoked."

She said she must protect the community, and other women, from him.

"Women should be free to walk the streets alone without fear of being attacked by strangers," she said.

Ms Maasarwe's father Saeed and sister Noor flew from Israel for the sentencing, sitting in court to face the man who killed their loved one for the first time.

Other family members some 14,000km away in her home town of Baka al Gharbiyye watched through a live stream provided by the court as Supreme Court judge Elizabeth Hollingworth handed down the sentence.

Herrmann pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of Ms Maasarwe as she got off a tram and walked home in Bundoora on January 16.

Aiia Maasarwe, 21, was attacked taking a path home she’d walked many times.
Aiia Maasarwe, 21, was attacked taking a path home she’d walked many times.

 

Aiia’s death devastated those in her home town. Picture: Instagram.
Aiia’s death devastated those in her home town. Picture: Instagram.

 

Aiia was speaking to her sister on the phone when Herrmann struck. Picture: Instagram
Aiia was speaking to her sister on the phone when Herrmann struck. Picture: Instagram

It was a path she had trekked safely many times before, but this night she would not make it home.

Instead, the bright student was confronted by an angry Herrmann who repeatedly hit her across the head with a metal pole, knocking her unconscious.

Fearing passers-by may see him, he then dragged her behind some bushes and raped her.

The homeless wannabe rapper then struck her to the head a further nine times, fracturing her skull, before fleeing the scene.

Ms Maasarwe's sister Ruba was on the phone to her and heard the attack, including her sister's harrowing screams and final words of "You piece of s---" in Arabic.

She raised concerns with authorities hours later when she and other family members could not reach Ms Maasarwe.

Codey Herrmann pleaded guilty to murdering international student Aiia Maasarwe. Picture: AAP Image/James Ross
Codey Herrmann pleaded guilty to murdering international student Aiia Maasarwe. Picture: AAP Image/James Ross

Herrmann was quickly linked to the heinous crime after his bloodstained shirt and black cap were found nearby.

Ms Maasarwe's purse and the murder weapon was also found dumped in grassland - both with his fingerprints and DNA on them.

He was arrested in a squatter's house two days later.

Herrmann has never been able to explain why he targeted the young Israeli-Palestinian student, who was in Australia on exchange from her university in Shanghai.

But forensic psychiatrist Andrew Carroll told an earlier court hearing Herrmann had an "unbridled anger at the world", in particular at females, after he had been abandoned by his mother from an early age.

That night he had "an eruption of suppressed rage", Dr Carroll said.

Aiia was on her phone when Herrmann struck.
Aiia was on her phone when Herrmann struck.

READ MORE

AIIA MAASARWE'S FINAL PHONE CALL

KILLER CODEY HERRMANN'S SHOCK COURT BLUNDER

AIIA'S FATHER TRIES TO DELAY COURT CASE

Prosecutor Patrick Bourke had urged Justice Hollingworth to lock up Herrmann for life, describing his actions as "the worst category of murder".

He said Herrmann's attack on the unsuspecting student was "vicious, violent and depraved".

"It strikes at the liberty of all, but of course in particular women, to do no more than walk down a public street in peace and safety," Mr Bourke said.

But barrister Tim Marsh had argued Herrmann should have a chance at parole, saying he was "not a monster", but instead "a young man who has led a life of extraordinary disadvantage".

Earlier this month, Herrmann penned an apology letter to Ms Maasarwe's parents, saying their daughter "didn't deserve such a terrible and tragic thing to happen to her".

"I don't expect forgiveness, as I will never be able to forgive myself and I will be trying to make amends for the rest of my life," Herrmann wrote. "There's no excuse. I truly apologise."

rebekah.cavanagh@news.com.au

Herrmann struck Aiia with a metal pole after she got off a Bundoora tram.
Herrmann struck Aiia with a metal pole after she got off a Bundoora tram.


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