Rapist who tortured woman in hotel for 8 hours handed 8½-year sentence

·2 min read

The rapist who confined and tortured a woman in a Calgary hotel room for eight hours has been sentenced to 8½ years in prison but given a reduced sentence because of difficult conditions he endured while in custody.

Vasilios (Billy) Georgopoulos, 39, was convicted of sexual assault causing bodily harm, assault with a weapon, unlawful confinement and uttering death threats stemming from a 2017 attack on a woman whose identity is protected by a publication ban.

On top of the standard 1½ days of credit for each day of the time he's served, Court of Queen's Bench Justice Alan Macleod gave Georgopoulos an extra six months for the hardships he suffered in custody.

At his own request, Georgopoulos has been in segregation since he was taken into custody after being found guilty last year. He also suffered a cut on his forehead after guards took him to the floor when he refused to come out of his room.

After a total reduction of 21 months, Georgopoulos has about six years and nine months left to serve.

'Consensual sex turned into a nightmare'

In October 2017, Georgopoulos and his victim met online.

The pair each had a couple of drinks. GHB, known as the date-rape drug, was found in the woman's system in the hours after the attack.

"What started out as consensual sex turned into a nightmare for the complainant," said Macleod in reading his decision.

Georgopoulos quickly turned violent, punching his victim in the face, repeatedly raping her and calling her cruel names.

He also burned her with a lighter.

The victim testified that Georgopoulos threatened to kill her, her mother and children if she reported him to police.

She said he told her to "shut up and stop crying" and put his hand over her mouth to muffle her cries.

Victim escapes

After about eight hours, she escaped the hotel when Georgopoulos was on the phone. She took a cab to her mother's home and called police.

Earlier in the week, at the sentencing hearing, the victim read a statement about how the crimes affected her.

She wrote about being reclusive, living in a state of emotional, psychological and mental anguish.

The victim has been hospitalized twice because of anxiety and stress, and has been unable to work since she was attacked.

Prosecutor Zailin Lakhoo had proposed a nine- to 12-year prison term.

Defence lawyer Kelsey Sitar argued her client should spend six to eight years behind bars but, that with credit for time served and poor conditions in the remand centre, it should be reduced to four to six years.

In 2016, Georgopoulos was charged with manslaughter and accessory after the fact to murder for the November 2015 stabbing death of Alan Beach outside a pub in Red Deer.

He ended up pleading guilty to a lesser charge of assault in 2017.