Warning: This article contains graphic details of sexual assault and may be distressing to some readers.
A man who posed as a modelling agent and then sexually assaulted teens in Vancouver and Surrey will spend two years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual assault.
Justice Jennifer Duncan said Kashif Ramzan bears a high degree of moral blameworthiness for the offences.
“He was not motivated by anything except fulfilling his desire to interact sexually with young women he picked from Instagram by weaving a tissue of lies,” Duncan said.
Ramzan pleaded guilty to the sexual assault of a young woman known as V.N. between Sept. 14-19, 2019 in Vancouver and Surrey, as well as the assault of a young woman known as A.C. in Vancouver on April 25, 2020.
Duncan, sitting in New Westminster B.C. Supreme Court, said Ramzan contacted women on Instagram, pretending to be someone from a casting or talent agency and a photographer. He claimed to have influence in the modelling and acting world.
Ramzan is none of those things, Duncan said.
He persuaded V.N. and A.C. to attend auditions with him and in the course of the auditions, he engaged in sexual acts with them.
“Mr. Ramzan asked both of the complainants about their comfort level with nudity and love scenes in advance of the auditions. By his plea of guilty, he has admitted that he neither had their consent nor had an honest, but mistaken, belief in their communicated consent to engage in the sexual acts that took place with them,” Duncan said in her Feb. 9 ruling.
Further Ramzan created a website – reezphotography.com – and an associated email account to convince women he was a professional photographer associated with the modelling industry.
“The website does not represent a legitimate photography business,” Duncan said. “Mr. Ramzan appropriated images of models and uploaded them to this site.”
He told V.N. that if she had sex with him, he would give her the best recommendation, which would lead to a 99 per cent chance of being recruited for a film.
She was 18 when the incidents began.
He began touching her, despite her protestations and bleeding. She later agreed to have sex for money and also performed oral sex.
For the offences, Ramzan was given six months less one day incarceration.
A.C. was 19 when Ramzan contacted her via Instagram, saying he thought she could be a professional model. He said he was recruiting for a high-profile film, that, the director had agreed to consider her for the lead role with the starting pay of $50,000.
He asked what her limitations were concerning lovemaking scenes.
“A.C. said she was comfortable with nudity and love scenes so long as the partner was respectful and professional and there was no penetration or sexual intercourse,” Duncan wrote.
Ramzan drove her to a Surrey hotel, where he had reserved the penthouse suite. He had cameras and video equipment.
He directed A.C. to remove her clothing, with the exception of underwear and nipple covers, so he could take her measurements and fill out some forms. As he measured A.C., he touched her breasts and buttocks without her consent.
Soon, he was videotaping them on a couch and took his pants off.
Then, he started digitally penetrating her in various places, causing bleeding.
“It is troubling that when Mr. Ramzan first noticed the blood he did not stop what he was doing or alter the speed or force of the digital penetration,” Duncan said.
After having some food, Ramzan produced some sex toys and, without asking A.C. for consent, placed a collar around her neck and handcuffs on her wrists behind her back. He attached the collar to the cuffs with a chain and placed her face down on the bed in the bedroom.
A 12-minute video recording was made of what occurred in the bedroom.
For those offences, Duncan imposed a sentence of two years less a day to be served consecutively with the other sentence.
“Mr. Ramzan set up an elaborate framework of online deceit from which he engaged in a pattern of predatory conduct against young women,” Duncan said.
Ramzan is a permanent resident of Canada, not a citizen. His criminal conviction could result in deportation.
Having entered guilty pleas to two counts of sexual assault, Mr. Ramzan is inadmissible to Canada on the basis of serious criminality and subject to a removal order,” Duncan said. “The Immigration Appeal Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board has the power to stay a removal order on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.”
His wife said if her husband is deported, they cannot be together in Pakistan, where he was born, because she is not Muslim. They also could not be together in South Korea because his criminal conviction would bar him from entering her homeland.
If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Call local police or VictimLinkBC at 1-800-563-0808 for information and support; the toll-free multilingual service is available across B.C. and the Yukon 24/7.
- WAVAW Rape Crisis Centre: 604-255-6344
- Vancouver Rape Relief & Women's Shelter: 604-872-8212