Aiia Maasarwe’s father Saeed wept at the thought that his daughter’s psychotic killer could walk free in as little as 30 years
The father of murdered Israeli student Aiia Maasarwe has broken down outside court after his daughter’s killer was jailed for 36 years.
Ms Maasarwe, 21, was brutally raped and murdered by Codey Herrmann as she was walking home from the tram in Bundoora, Melbourne, on January 16.
Herrmann was sentenced to 36 years behind bars with a non-parole period of 30 years in the Victorian Supreme Court on Tuesday afternoon.
But outside court, Ms Maasarwe’s father Saeed – who flew in from Israel for sentencing – wept at the thought that his daughter’s psychotic killer could walk free in as little as 30 years.
‘I don’t know, after (30 years) … he can go continue his life as normal. How he can do that?’ he asked.
Mr Maasarwe called on the government to crack down on violence with tougher sentencing for perpetrators.
‘Safety is very simple. I want to send a message: Don’t let people think they can do like this, that they can take the life of another.’
Mr Maasarwe remembered his daughter as a happy, caring soul.
Aiia Maasarwe, 21, was beaten with a metal pole, raped, murdered, and set on fire with a barbecue lighter and WD-40 in January this year
Ms Maasarwe’s father Saeed called on the government to crack down on violence with tougher sentencing for perpetrators. (pictured: Mr Maasarwe arriving at the Supreme Court of Victoria in Melbourne on Tuesday)
‘She looked at the people, doesn’t matter which village, which nation, which colour, what is your mind … with the same eyes. This was Aiia. She liked all the people, all the humans, doesn’t matter where and when. This is how I want to remember her.’
Herrmann pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of Ms Maasarwe earlier this year.
Ms Maasarwe had just stepped off the tram when she called her sister Ruba Maasarwe.
Ruba had only just picked up the phone when she heard a blood-curdling scream and her sister shouting ‘You piece of s***’,’ in Arabic.
Then the phone went silent as Herrmann carried out his sickening attack.
The drug-user bashed Ms Maasarwe over the head with a metal pole, before dragging her into bushes where he raped her.
Codey Herrmann, 21, was sentenced to 36 years behind bars with a non-parole period of 30 years in the Victorian Supreme Court on Tuesday afternoon
Ms Maasarwe had just stepped off the tram when she called her sister Ruba Maasarwe (pictured) who picked up the phone and heard a blood-curdling scream and her sister shouting ‘You piece of s***’,’ in Arabic
The assault was so ferocious that she was left with horrendous injuries, including a broken bone in her neck from where he throttled her.
When Herrmann was finished, he bashed over the head again with the pole. He later doused her body in WD-40 and set her on fire with a barbecue lighter in a clumsy attempt to destroy his DNA.
Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Hollingworth said Herrmann’s treatment of the victim’s body ‘showed utter contempt for her dignity’.
‘Women should be free to walk the streets alone without fear of being violently attacked by a stranger,’ Justice Hollingworth said during sentencing remarks.
‘Not only did you take away her life you deprived a family of their precious daughter and sister.’
Herrmann himself has been unable to explain why he murdered Ms Maasarwe, and a grovelling letter of apology to her parents failed to provide any answers.
‘I’m sorry, your daughter didn’t deserve such a terrible and tragic thing to happen to her,’ the killer’s handwritten letter read.
‘I didn’t expect any forgiveness as I will never be able to forgive yourself and I will be trying to make amends for the rest of my life.
Herrmann’s lawyer previously told the court the young man deserved some leniency because he had a personality disorder stemming from a severely traumatic childhood and this had warped his view of the world.
During sentencing, Justice Hollingworth said ‘any expression of remorse [from Herrmann] has been limited and recent’.
She also compared Herrmann’s offending to the brutal rape and murder of Eurydice Dixon, who was attacked by stranger Jaymes Todd as she walked home in June 2018.
A photograph shows several items located at the crime scene
An image of a metal pole found at the crime scene of Ms Maasarwe’s murder was tendered to court on October 1