13 youths indicted in gang-rape of 15-year-old girl

Brother of suspect claims sibling was subjected to peer pressure.

March 3, 2010 11:53
1 minute read.

rape 58 generic. (photo credit: 2)

Thirteen youths were indicted Wednesday on suspicion of gang-raping a 15-year-old girl over the course of three years, in a case that sent shock-waves across the country when it surfaced on Monday.

The suspects, 12 of whom are aged 17, and one aged 18, of north Tel Aviv and Ramat Hasharon, are believed to have struck, sodomized and abused the victim, now aged 18, and recorded the abuse on their cell-phone video cameras.

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The 13 were charged in the Tel Aviv District Court with rape, abuse, assault, extortion and making threats.

The youths told police that all the acts were “consensual.”

Police said they were also searching for other suspects in the case, and were trying to track down other teenage girls who were allegedly attacked by several of the detainees.

Speaking at an event in on Tuesday night, Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar said Israeli society had reached a low point and that values had been neglected.

“When there is a career, there is no time to find out what’s happening with the children,” he said at a Ramat Gan scholarship ceremony. 

One of the suspect’s brothers, meanwhile, told Israel Radio that his sibling was subject to peer pressure. He claimed that his brother would stand aside and was shocked by what he saw.

Police launched the investigation last month after a concerned parent filed a complaint with the youth section of the Tel Aviv Police Central Unit.

The eldest suspect, who is the suspected ringleader, is thought to have manipulated the troubled girl’s affection for him. Police suspect he routinely took the girl to bomb shelters and public gardens, contacted the other suspects and encouraged the abuse.

Other suspects described the girl as being extremely obedient to the main suspect, saying she was his “soldier.”

Police suspect that the teens would put out cigarettes on her and engage in other acts of violence when the girl resisted their attacks.

The girl did not wish to implicate the main suspect at the start of the investigation, a police source said, adding that she nevertheless confirmed that the suspected acts took place.

Police have taken a critical view of the girl’s school and its failure to identify the ongoing abuse

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