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An illegal immigrant who sexually assaulted two women at packed Bournemouth beach while his friends watched and laughed has been jailed for 18 months.

Kuku Machhal, 31, of Southall, west London, groped the women in the sea in two separate incidents on July 23 last year, Portsmouth Crown Court heard. 

The attacks took place on Bournemouth beach in front of a group of Machhal’s friends, who were heard cheering and laughing about what had happened.

Machhal’s behaviour was described as ‘intimidating’ and ‘degrading’ by Judge David Melville QC, who added that both victims were vulnerable as they were in the water.

His actions came just a few days after a 15-year-old girl was raped in the sea close to Bournemouth Pier in an unconnected attack.

In that incident, the teenage suspect, who remains at large, dragged the girl into deeper water and away from her friends before raping her.

In Machhal’s case, the court heard that both victims reported what had happened to them to authorities and seafront security staff located the suspect and stopped him from leaving until police arrived.

Kuku Machhal (pictured), 31, of Southall, west London, groped the women in the sea in two separate incidents on July 23 last year, Portsmouth Crown Court heard

Kuku Machhal (pictured), 31, of Southall, west London, groped the women in the sea in two separate incidents on July 23 last year, Portsmouth Crown Court heard

Kuku Machhal (pictured), 31, of Southall, west London, groped the women in the sea in two separate incidents on July 23 last year, Portsmouth Crown Court heard

The attacks took place on Bournemouth beach (pictured) in front of a group of Machhal's friends, who were heard cheering and laughing about what had happened

The attacks took place on Bournemouth beach (pictured) in front of a group of Machhal's friends, who were heard cheering and laughing about what had happened

The attacks took place on Bournemouth beach (pictured) in front of a group of Machhal’s friends, who were heard cheering and laughing about what had happened

Machhal, who arrived illegally in the UK from the Punjab state of India in 2015, pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault and was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment.

Judith Constable, prosecuting, said that in a police interview, Machhal accepted touching the first victim but claimed there had been a ‘strong current which brushed him into her’. 

Machhal, who had no previous convictions, also denied doing anything wrong in respect of the second woman.

He initially denied both allegations but changed his plea to guilty at a previous court hearing.

Lesley Manley, defending, told the court that the defendant was sorry for his actions, but the judge did not accept that Machhal was remorseful.

Machhal, who arrived illegally in the UK from the Punjab state of India in 2015, was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment at Portsmouth Crown Court (pictured)

Machhal, who arrived illegally in the UK from the Punjab state of India in 2015, was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment at Portsmouth Crown Court (pictured)

Machhal, who arrived illegally in the UK from the Punjab state of India in 2015, was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment at Portsmouth Crown Court (pictured)

Ms Manley said: ‘On that day, Mr Machhal did not go there with any premeditated intention to do harm but obviously his behaviour was not what one would expect.

‘Nothing like this has happened before and it is extremely unlikely, I submit, that this behaviour would ever be repeated.

Machhal, whose wife and two children are in India being supported by his sister, is facing deportation. He has lived in Southall for the past six years.

Ms Manley said he still has debts to the people who helped him get documentation to enter the country and he was fearful for his safety should he return to India. 

She added: ‘Currently he is facing deportation. A notice has been served upon him and he is hoping to seek legal advice in relation to his immigration position.’ 

Judge Melville described Machhal’s actions as ‘disgraceful’ and said he showed ‘no remorse’.

He said: ‘There was a degree of planning and you did of course have your friends with you as well.

‘I do no accept that you are remorseful. When interviewed you accepted no personal responsibility at all.’

Machhal was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment and was placed on the sex offender’s register for five years.

Source: Daily Mail UK

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