Saudi Arabian man in court after trying to flee to Mexico to escape rape charges

Mansor Alshmmri
July 07, 2015 2:30 pm

PROVO — After trying to flee to Mexico, a Saudi Arabian national accused of raping a woman appeared Tuesday in Fourth District Court.

The suspect, Monsour Alshammari, 27, was arrested in late March on suspicion of date-raping a woman at his apartment in Orem. In late April, he tried to flee to Mexico to return home to Saudi Arabia, according to police. The Saudi Arabian consulate posted his cash-only bail, and court records allege Alshammari is related to Arabian royalty.

Orem police notified Homeland Security about Alshammari before his hasty departure south, and he was arrested at the border near Tijuana, Mexico. Alshammari was then held in a federal detention center in San Diego before his extradition back to Utah.

However, Alshammari had a mandatory court appearance he missed while he was in San Diego. That, and other reasons, led Judge Derek Pullan to forfeit Alshammari’s bail, landing him back in jail once he was in Utah.

Alshammari’s attorney, Ron Yengich, contended his client didn’t choose to miss court; he was out of the state against his will, he said.
However, Pullan disagreed. In the ruling Pullan filed against Yengich’s motion to exonerate Alshammari’s cash bond, he said, “It was reasonable to conclude that Defendant was fleeing the United States and not merely pursuing a vacation in Tijuana, Mexico four days before his scheduled waiver hearing in this court. … For these reasons, the Court concludes that Defendant’s failure to appear on April 21, 2015 was willful, or at the very least by reason of his own neglect.”

Because the Saudi Arabian consulate bailed Alshammari out, a consulate member needs to be present to discuss the bail matter. It’s currently Ramadan according to the Islamic calendar, and Yengich said in court Tuesday it would be difficult to get someone from the consulate to Utah until after July 17.

Alshammari’s next hearing will be Aug. 4 — plenty of time for Yengich’s team to have discussions with a consulate member following the holy month.

Alshammari is now in custody at the Utah County Jail.

He is accused of raping a girl in late February after a date gone wrong, police reports indicate. Alshammari reportedly offered the girl drugs and when she refused, held her down against his bed and tried to kiss her. But court records indicate that as she fought, the situation escalated and he raped her.

After nearly a month of investigation, officers with the Orem Police Department met with Alshammari on March 19. Police reports state he told officers he went on a date with the girl and that was all. But investigation and victim statements gave officers enough probable cause to arrest Alshammari.