Jailed rapist Benny Sela raped his cellmate in prison, Army Radio reported Saturday. Sela is serving a 35-year term for some two dozen rapes and other assaults — the longest term for such crimes ever handed down in Israel.
Police officers were scrambled to the Sharon Prison in central Israel and interrogated Sela and the cellmate, who complained of the crime. The cellmate was later taken to hospital.
Sela was arrested in 1999 and, at his trial, claimed his proclivity to rape stemmed from several traumatic childhood incidents, including seeing his alcoholic father commit suicide by jumping from an electricity post to his death, and sexual harassment by women in Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan, where he grew up.
He was convicted of crimes including multiple incidents of sexual assault against a relative of his, which began when she was eight years old.
He was sentenced on the last day of the year 2000 to 35 years in prison. The prosecution sought a sentence of 220 years. Early in his trial, Sela asked to be chemically neutered.
In 2006, Sela embarrassed police when he succeeded in escaping police custody in the parking lot of the Tel Aviv District Court. He was only recaptured two weeks later. He was then given an additional four years in jail.