Controversial senator Derryn Hinch has sparked public outrage after he described the tragic murder of an Israeli student in Melbourne as ‘shades of Jill Meagher’.
Social media went into meltdown after the former media broadcaster posted an insensitive tweet about Aiia Maasarwe, the young woman murdered in a ‘horrific, horrendous’ attack in Bundoora in the city’s north on Wednesday morning.
The tweet makes graphic and serious allegations about Ms Maasarwe’s alleged killer while comparing the case to that of Jill Meagher, a journalist who was raped and murdered in an inner Melbourne suburb in 2012.
Derryn Hinch stands by his views, despite was slammed on social media on Thursday night
‘What has this town become?’ Senator Hinch ended the tweet.
People were quick to slam the federal Senator as insensitive, disrespectful, appalling and inappropriate.
‘Your willingness to exploit any situation is breathtakingly disgraceful. Shame on you Hinch,’ one tweeted.
Another added: ‘Think of her family Derryn! You may ‘want people to know’ but they might not want us to know the details of what happened to their girl. It’s beyond horrible but your blatant disregard of their feelings makes it even worse. Shame!’
Another accused Senator Hinch of using the tragedy to try and make a political point.
Aiia Maasarwe (pictured) has been identified as the young woman whose body was found outside a Melbourne shopping centre on Wednesday
‘Sure we can all just rise above politics when a horrific and tragic event like another murder of a young woman occurs?,’ they tweeted.
Many called on Senator Hinch to delete the tweet.
‘Aiia Maasarwe’s family deserves better than this. If you have any respect for Aiia please delete this tweet and apologise to those who loved her,’ one woman commented.
Senator Hinch tweeted that Aiia Maasarwe’s death had ‘shades of Jill Meagher’ (pictured)
No arrests have yet been made over the death of Ms Maasarwe, whose partially naked body was found by window washers in scrub near the Polaris shopping centre in Bundoora at 7am on Wednesday.
Ms Maasarwe had been studying Chinese and English at Shanghai University, but moved to Melbourne six months ago to study at La Trobe University.
The 21-year-old Arab Israeli student was so scared of the walk from the tram stop to her student accommodation she would call one of her sisters while walking to feel safer, a family member told The Australian.
Police believe a t-shirt and cap found near where her body was discovered belonging to her killer.
Police are investigating whether she was raped, but would not describe her injuries other than saying that the attack shortly after midnight was utterly brutal.
The controversial senator responded to the online criticism with this response (pictured)
Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper said it was believed to be a ‘random attack’.
‘This was a horrendous, horrific attack inflicted on a completely innocent young woman who was a visitor to our city,’ he said.
Detectives are scouring a list of known sex offenders as they hunt the killer of the young Israeli woman.
Senator Hinch has previously been in hot water with the legal system on numerous occasions for contempt of court.
He spent 50 days in prison in 2014 for breaching a suppression order by revealing details of the criminal history of Ms Meagher’s killer Adrian Ernest Bayley.
Many people called on Senator Hinch to delete the tweet and show respect to Aiia Maasarwe’s (pictured) grieving family
He was given the option of a fine instead, which he chose not to pay ‘on principle’.
Senator Hinch has since responded to Thursday night’s backlash and made no apologies for the earlier tweet, which remained online.
‘To all the do-gooder Tweeters attacking me for telling the gruesome truth about the Bundoora rape/ murder. This brute is still out there. My tweet was for the memory of Jill Meagher and Eurydice Dixon,’ Mr Hinch later tweeted.
His later tweet sparked a war of words with departing federal senator David Leyonhjelm.
‘Except you voted against giving women like these the means to protect themselves. Do you have any principles at all,’ Senator Leyonhjelm posted.
Former media broadcaster turned senator Derryn Hinch been in hot water with the legal system on numerous occasions for contempt of court