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Recently I came to Australia from India to study RMIT's Bachelor of Marketing. I am aged 17 years. I was placed in RMIT Village where my parents and myself back in India was assured that I'd be safe.
Little did I know about the online world. Back in India where I lived there no such thing known as Internet. I lived in a rural village where there was no telephone line and no broadband.
In Australia I had just signed up to Facebook to connect with my friends and my family. And hopefully to meet some new people. A week later someone wanted to be friend me. An Indian guy who was in Australia supposedly a student at Melbourne University. He was studying commerce in the second year and wanted to mentor me. I thought well great. He supposedly had a part time business in which he owned. He said he lived in the city.
After a few chat sessions he wanted to take me out to dinner and to his place. He wanted my bank account details and so I gave it to him without thinking. He also wanted my address and my passport details and I gave those too.
We went to dinner in Lygon st and everything was going well. He had paid for me and got a taxi for us. I was supposed to be dropped home but the taxi went straight past the village. Instead it went straight to his house in Epping where he really lived. He lived with an older Australian guy and together they beat me and raped me. They also drugged me so that I couldn't call for help. They then stole all the money and hacked into my bank account.
In the morning when I woke up I started crying. I was driven back to the Village by then. I rang my parents and they became very worried for me. I was too scared to go to the police just in case they took my passport away. I didn't know of my rights back then.
In the end things got so bad that I ended up leaving and not finishing my course. A lesson to be learnt never ever accept friend requests from strangers. And don't ever provide your personal information to them. In fact leave it out on social networking sites such as Facebook.
Would you accept a friend request from a stranger?