A Cherokee County man has been sentenced for raping and abusing his children.
Yahya Abutair on Thursday, during a break in the state's trial, pleaded guilty to one count incest, two counts of aggravated assault family violence and one count of simple battery family violence, Chief Assistant District Attorney Rachelle Carnesale said Friday morning.
After the negotiated plea, Abutair was sentenced by Cherokee County Superior Court Judge Ellen McElyea to 50 years, with 25 to serve in prison and the remainder to be served on probation.
Abutair, 54, was on trial for the "sexual and physical abuse of his natural children," Carnesale said.
The defendant was originally indicted in February on one count of rape, two counts of incest, four counts of aggravated assault family violence and three counts of simple battery family violence.
After Abutair's children originally disclosed their abuse to law enforcement, they were taken into Department of Family and Children Services’ custody and Abutair fled the country.
He remained in Jordan for nearly a year and then was arrested in May 2013 upon re-entry into the United States, Carnesale stated.
Blue Ridge Judicial Circuit District Attorney Shannon Wallace noted Abutair "destroyed his family and destroyed his own life."
"This is exactly the type of vicious predator that deserves a lengthy prison
term," she said. "His children can feel safe now."