All charged in Fittja rape case freed
December 19, 2017
[Photo caption: In this stairwell the rape allegedly happened]
Soderholm’s criminal court today announced a judgment of release (i.e. dropping charges) for all five immigrant men who were charged with gross rape and abetting a gross rape in Fittja in the summer of 2016. The court did not find the woman’s account fully believable in spite of the fact that injuries were found and that sperm from many men were found on her clothing.
It was in August 2016 that a 30-year-old woman at the Fittja center in Botkyrka commune accompanied a group of men to another public place. There she was later attacked by a larger group of men and exposed to “very serious sexual violence”, as police earlier expressed it on their webpage.
“It concerns a terrible rape that led to a very terrible torture-like trauma for my client. This is one of the most terrible rape cases that I have encountered in my 26 years of work,” said the woman’s counsel, the attorney Elisabeth Massi Fritz, in an email to the newspaper Metro in September.
But now the men who were charged have been freed, all of whom are immigrants and come from Iraq and Somalia.
In its judgment, the court directed criticism at the investigation upon which the prosecution was based.
“All parties have agreed that the investigation had its shortcomings. During the hearing it became apparent that the reasoning the prosecution is based upon falters,” says Chief Judge Erica Hemtke.
“The evidence presented by the prosecutor at the main hearing simply is not enough for anyone to be convicted. The information provided by the plaintiff does not coincide with it, and her information is not supported by other evidence,” says Erica Hemtke.
“Overall, the court judges the credibility and reliability of the information which she has given during the court proceedings,” writes the court.
At the same time, the judgment states:
“It is established that after the incident, the woman had injuries in the form of skin discolorations and skin scrapes, the origin and cause of which cannot be established. Sperm from several men were found on her clothing. She told police whom she met with soon after the incident as well as the doctor who treated her at the Soder hospital that she had been gang-raped and that she was in pain. She also showed signs of being in pain.
“It is established that there had been oral sex between three men and the woman. However, the parties had different accounts about whether there were also other sexual acts between the men and the woman, also whether all this happened during one and the same course of events in the stairwell,” as the prosecutor states.
Since the men have now been freed, there are no judgments for them to pay damages,” the court clarifies.