A Sunshine Coast tattooist has been jailed for raping two young women and secretly recording others while they showered.
A Sunshine Coast tattooist has been jailed for raping two young women and secretly recording others while they showered.

House of ‘disgusting’ horrors: Rapist made 200 recordings

A Sunshine Coast man secretly filmed young girls in a shower, raped two women while they slept and recorded his depraved sexual attacks on a hard drive, a court has been told.

Two young girls, a man and six women aged up to 48 were preyed on by Mark Dominic Bickel, whose wicked sexual offending lasted four years.

More than 203 recordings, including footage of three rapes, were found by a landlord organised in files with "disgusting and demeaning" labels, after Bickel, 51, was evicted from his Mountain Creek home in July last year.

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The court was told that the footage was taken from covert cameras Bickel had hidden around the house in a pin hole camera hidden in a towel hook, a makeup mirror and in two watches.

He had also set up secret cameras in other people's houses.

Cameras, not the one pictured, were hidden in the toilet and bathroom of Bickel’s house.
Cameras, not the one pictured, were hidden in the toilet and bathroom of Bickel’s house.


Bickel, who was bearded with long grey hair, sat with his eyes downcast in the dock of Brisbane Supreme Court on Wednesday where he pleaded guilty to more than 40 offences he committed between 2014 and 2018.

Crown prosecutor Carly Whelan described how the two women he had raped, aged in their 20s, had visited Bickel to get tattoos and had fallen asleep in his loungeroom.

Ms Whelan said Bickel had prepared one woman a coffee and given the other alcohol before they fell asleep, prompting Justice Peter Applegarth to ask if there was any evidence that they had been drugged.

"There isn't sufficient evidence to substantiate any stupefying charge," Ms Whelan said.

On one occasion Bickel filmed a young girl while she showered and then three years later gave that girl the drug ice before giving her a tattoo.

He also sexually assaulted other associates and tattoo clients when they slept at his house.

A statement written by one of the rape victims was read in court and spoke of the betrayal she felt as a result of his "sick fantasies".

She also described the terrible moment she watched footage of herself being abused.

"To have my mother sitting next to me watching your footage of myself was shattering, she will never forget it," the woman said.

"You used me at vulnerable times thinking it would be a secret forever, how quickly things can turn."

Bickel was convicted on three counts of rape, three sexual assault offences, three aggravated sexual assault offences, 22 charges of recording a person in breach of their privacy, two counts of making child exploitation material and five counts of tattooing a minor.

He also pleaded guilty to two counts of supplying dangerous drugs, possessing dangerous drugs and possessing utensils.

Bickel's barrister Simon Lewis said the former truck driver and landscaper had developed a paraphiliac disorder and ice addiction, which he blamed on a broken relationship.

"The catalyst for everything seems to be when his wife left him," Mr Lewis said.

The court was told that after a year in custody Bickel, who stands at six-foot-six, had put on 20kg, was willing to get help and "showing appropriate shame and remorse for his conduct".

Mr Lewis said Bickel had installed the cameras in the bathroom as a security measure because he kept drugs in there.

But Justice Applegarth said "that doesn't make any sense to me".

Justice Applegarth said every offence Bickel had fronted court on was serious and had violated the nine people in some way.

"You reviewed your ill-gotten recordings and you had no regret, no remorse, you didn't use some hidden code and you had these disgraceful labels to gratify yourself," Justice Applegarth said.

"Your vile conduct in raping this young woman while she slept is to be contrasted with the remarkable dignity that she showed in her victim impact statement," he said.

Bickel was sentenced to eight and a half years' jail.

He will be eligible for parole on May 14, 2022.

 

*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.

*For 24-hour support in Queensland phone DVConnect on 1800 811 811, MensLine on 1800 600 636 or the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732.

Originally published as House of 'disgusting' horrors: Rapist made 200 recordings

Originally published as House of ‘disgusting’ horrors: Rapist made 200 recordings



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