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Court hearing excludes DNA evidence for Israeli suspects on trial for gang rape

January 31, 2024 at 3:51 pm

Israeli flag against clear blue sky and next to a barbed wire fence in old city of Jerusalem, Israel

The DNA evidence for two of the five Israelis facing charges in Cyprus over an alleged gang rape of a British woman in September last year was excluded during yesterday’s court hearing. According to the Times of Israel, the trial will now rely on witness statements, including the victim’s testimony, as the DNA material was reportedly discarded by the Famagusta criminal court due to the failure to adhere to standard police procedures during the evidence collection.

The five Israeli men, aged 19 and 20, from Majd Al-Krum in northern Israel, have been in custody since 4 September. Following the allegations made by the 20-year-old British woman who was on holiday in Ayia Napa, the charges against them include rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment and abduction.

The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, reported to the police that she had been sexually assaulted by the Israelis, who are said to have taken her by force from the hotel pool area to her room.

According to the Cyprus News Agency, the arrests came after police secured witness testimony to support the allegation.

Investigators removed evidence from the room, including bed sheets, and examined both the woman and the Israeli suspects for DNA samples. Moreover, leaked reports of the investigation said blood was found in the room and the woman had bruises and abrasions on her arms, said the Times of Israel. 

The case comes after another British woman won her appeal in 2022 to overturn a conviction for “lying” about being gang-raped by 12 Israeli tourists when she was 19 years’ old and on holiday at a Cyprus resort in 2019.

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