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13 April 2024

Sweden jails trio for Facebook livestream gang rape


A Swedish court on Tuesday sentenced three young men to prison for gang raping a woman and livestreaming the attack on Facebook.

Reza Mohammed Ahmadi, 21, was sentenced to two years and four months in prison for rape and accessory to rape, while Maysam Afshar, 18, was sentenced to one year in prison for rape, a reduced sentence because of his age.

Both are Afghan citizens who have been granted residency in Sweden.

Emil Khodagholi, a 21-year-old Swedish citizen, was sentenced to six months in prison for aggravated defamation for posting the rape on Facebook, and for failing to report it.

The men were arrested in the town of Uppsala northwest of Stockholm on January 22 after members of a closed Facebook group, which has 60,000 members, saw the attack streamed live and alerted police.

The film has since been removed from Facebook but it has been circulated on the internet.

Swedish prosecutors argued that Khodagholi had encouraged his friends, and "laughed and in close proximity filmed the incident with his mobile phone, and posted it live or very shortly after the rape on Facebook."

All three denied committing any crime. Ahmadi and Afshar admitted having sex with the woman but said it was consensual.

Khodagholi argued he was not the only one to film the events, and claimed he was unaware the victim did not want the images to be public.

But prosecutors said the woman was "heavily drunk" and "under the influence of drugs", which the men must have also noticed, the Uppsala district court said in a statement.

"It's not possible for a person in such a situation to consent," judge Nils Palbrant said in a statement.

The men were also ordered to pay damages totalling 335,000 kronor ($53,000) to the victim.