NEWS
30/12/2019 18:44 GMT

UK Government To Raise Case Of Brit Teen Found Guilty Of Lying About Being Gang Raped

The teenager was convicted of a single count of public mischief.

The UK is “seriously concerned about the fair trial guarantees” in the “deeply distressing case” of a British teenager found guilty of lying about being gang-raped in Cyprus.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office added it will be raising the issue with the Cypriot authorities.

The woman, 19, said she was attacked by up to 12 Israeli tourists in an Ayia Napa hotel on July 17 before making a retraction statement 10 days later.

She maintains that she was raped but pressured into changing her account by Cypriot police.

The teenager was convicted of a single count of public mischief at a packed Famagusta District Court in Paralimni, on Monday.

“The defendant gave police a false rape claim, while having full knowledge that this was a lie,” Judge Michalis Papathanasiou said.

“The reason why she initially gave false statements was because she realised that she was being recorded while she was having sexual intercourse and so she was placed in a difficult position and felt embarrassed.

“She then apologised saying she had made a mistake by filing a false statement.”

He said the woman “did not make a good impression, she did not tell the truth, and tried to mislead the court” during her evidence.

“There was no rape, or violence, and police had carried out a thorough investigation making all necessary arrests,” the judge added.

The teenager nodded her head slightly as she was found guilty, showing no other emotion until after her sentencing was adjourned until January 7.

She then argued with her lawyers, saying, “I thought you were asking for a fine,” after Ritsa Pekri asked the judge to impose a suspended sentence, telling the court she was under strong psychological pressure at the time.

The teenager was a week into a working holiday the summer before she was due to start university when she alleged she was raped by the group of young Israeli men.

All 12 Israelis arrested over the alleged attack returned home after they were released.

The woman spent more than a month in prison before she was granted bail at the end of August and has not been allowed to leave the island.

She is still on bail and could face up to a year in jail and a 1,700 euro (£1,500) fine when she is sentenced.